Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders raised $26 million over the third quarter of the year. This puts him only $2 million short of the more mainstream frontrunner, Hillary Clinton, who gets much more of her money from large donors.
Bernie Sanders has been a vociferous critic of the presence of money in politics, and he has put his proverbial – and literal – money where his mouth is. His campaign is supported mostly by small-dollar donations made online.
Perhaps most surprisingly was that the campaign raised $2 million in a 24 hour period on the final day of donations for the fundraising period. Campaign spokesman Michael Briggs said that the donations poured in throughout Wednesday as the result of tweets and emails asking supporters to give as much as they can before the close of the quarter.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign revealed its third-quarter fundraising coming in at $28 million, barely ahead of Sanders’ campaign’s haul.
This shows a serious narrowing of the funding gap between the insurgent Vermont senator and the former secretary of state, most of which is a result of grassroots support. At the end of the first quarter in July, the Sanders campaign said it raised a comparatively modest $15 million from 250,000 individual donors. This was towered over by Hillary Clinton’s $45 million – a record amount of first-quarter cash for a presidential campaign – from 200,000 donors.
The Sanders campaign at that time said that the average contribution was $33.51 and that 99 percent of the donations were under $250. Using division, we can estimate that that the average donation to Hillary during the same period was $225. A campaign aide of hers said that 91 percent of the donations were below 100 dollars, according to CNN.