Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke’s fundraising improved over the last three months, but he is still way behind the front-runners battling for the party’s nomination.
O’Rourke announced late Friday that he will report raising $4.5 million since July 1. That’s better than the $3.6 million he pulled in during the previous three months, but still well behind U.S. Sens Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, both of whom reported raising over $24 million since July.
Since he got into the race in March, O’Rourke has raised about $17.5 million. But Sanders has raised $61.5 million and Warren $49.8 million. Former Vice President Joe Biden got into the race in late April and has raised $37.2 million.
The fundraising numbers become more critical with the Iowa caucuses just over 100 days away on Feb. 3.
Many of the top presidential candidates have announced their fundraising totals for the last three months on the campaign. Here is how they compare with one another in fundraising between July 1 and Sept. 30, based on what their campaigns have publicly released to the public. Some candidates, such as former San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro have not released their fundraising numbers.
$25.3M: U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders
$24.6M: U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren
$19.1M: South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg
$15.2M: Vice President Joe Biden
$11.6M: U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris
$10M: Businessman Andrew Yang
$6M: U.S. Sen. Cory Booker
$4.8M: U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar
$4.5M: Former Congressman Beto O’Rourke
$3.1M: Author Marianne Williamson
$2.3M: Montana Gov. Steve Bullock
$2.1M: U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet
Earlier this month, O’Rourke told supporters in an email that based on the fundraising of the last three months, he expected to have enough money to battle into the earlier primary and caucus states in February, and even into Super Tuesday on March 3 when Texas and California will be among 15 states voting in primaries.
“We have the resources to continue to organize, to canvass, to phone bank, to reach those who will decide the outcomes of the caucuses in Iowa and Nevada, the primaries in New Hampshire and South Carolina, and the states that make up Super Tuesday,” O’Rourke told his supporters in a email earlier in October.
O’Rourke’s fundraising numbers have mirrored his polling support.
In his first month on the trail, he raised more than $9 million and was polling as high as 12 percent, putting him among the top four contenders. But over the summer, his fundraising slid to $3.6 million as his poll numbers crashed into the single digits. Now, O’Rourke is struggling to hit 3 percentage points in enough polls to continue to remain in national debates.
O’Rourke and fellow Texan Julián Castro have both qualified for Tuesday’s debate in Ohio. But for the November debate, the Democratic National Committee is requiring candidates to hit 3 percent in four qualifying polls. O’Rourke has only one poll showing him at 3 percent, while Castro has none.
Castro sent a fundraising email to supporters late last month warning that not being on the debate stage would have a terrible effect on his campaign.
“I don’t say this lightly: If I don’t make the next debate stage, it will be the end of my campaign,” Castro said.
The O’Rourke campaign says there is a lot of good information in the latest fundraising numbers to show they are heading in the right direction. The campaign focused on having raised $1 million more than the previous three months and the fact that they have more new donors being added every month.
Full campaign finance reports for all of the presidential candidates will be released to the public next week. Candidates typically release some numbers early to show where they stand in comparison to other contenders. For instance, South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg was quick to announce he had raised $19.1 million since July. He raised $24.9 million in the three months before that.