The Democratic National Committee is once again in financial distress, and it could have a big impact on the 2020 election according to Bloomberg. In the first four months of 2019, the party outspent its contributions – tacking on $3 million in new debt as donor enthusaism has all but dried up.
“It’s trouble, it’s going to affect us,” said Cincinnati-based Democratic bundler Allan Berliant, who says the party needs to open offices nationwide and get people mobilized.
“All of that starts with fundraising,” Berliant added.
By the end of April, the DNC had collected contributions of more than $24.4 million, but had spent $28.4 million, according to the latest disclosures. It had $7.6 million cash on hand, $1 million less than in January. It posted $6.2 million in debt, including bank loans and unpaid invoices to vendors, Federal Election Commission records show.
That compared with the Republican National Committee, which thanks in part to Trump’s non-stop fundraising since winning the White House had $34.7 million in the bank and no debt. It raised nearly $62 million so far this year, two-and-a-half times the DNC’s haul. –Bloomberg
While some Democratic officials blame the hesitant donors on the distracting field of 23 Democrats who are ‘vacuuming up contributors cash,’ a few major donors have pointed to the perception that the party is disorganized, and was significantly harmed by hacked emails released by WikiLeaks which revealed that the DNC was working to help Hillary Clinton defeat Bernie Sanders for the nomination while claiming to be neutral.
“Debbie Wasserman Schultz really destroyed a lot of confidence in the DNC for a lot of people and for a lot of different reasons,” said Orlando based fundraiser and trial attorney, John Morgan.
Some potential contributors would rather not support a party they perceive as dominated by establishment figures and their more moderate approach to issues, said one bundler who who has held fundraisers for the party, but asked not to be named because he’s not authorized to speak publicly on its behalf. –Bloomberg
While donors to the DNC have dried up, Democratic candidates have been mopping up – with 16 of them collectively raising $77 million from January through March 16, which is $3 million more than Trump’s committees and the RNC combined. The DNC has also been overshadowed by other Democratic organizations such as the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) which supports House Candidates. It’s Senate counterpart, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) is gearing up to try and end the tenure of Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
The DCCC has raised over $40 million this year, beating the DNC every month, while the DSCC has raised $18 million.
The DNC is also competing with super PACs, which can accept unlimited amounts from companies, unions and individuals but can’t coordinate with candidates. Priorities USA, the main super PAC for supporting the party’s presidential nominees, counts among its donors some of the biggest Democratic givers, including billionaire investor George Soros and hedge-fund operators S. Donald Sussman and James H. Simons. –Bloomberg
“There’s a lot of competition for dollars right now,” said DNC finance committee member Jamie Ansorge.
Planning ahead for 2020, the DNC will use 100 million cellphone numbers bought during the midterms in order to ‘reach out’ to voters via text message. The party will also train around 1,000 college juniors to hit the ground next year and solicit donations. They have been warned of the consequences for failure…
“When we fall short,” said DNC Chairman Tom Perez in an email, “the critical work that needs to be done in order to elect Democrats can’t happen, because the money simply isn’t there.”