Biden and Trump Campaigns Nearly Tie in April Fundraising

Former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump will face off in November. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(CN) — Despite a global pandemic that wiped out more than 20 million American jobs last month, donors emptied their pockets and gave over $60 million to both the Biden and Trump campaigns, making them neck and neck in April fundraising.  

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden brought in $60.5 million compared to $61.7 million donated to President Donald Trump’s campaign, related fundraising committees and the Republican party. Despite a near tie in fundraising for the month of April, Biden celebrated the new numbers in a letter to supporters Monday.

“I am especially humbled because I know what a sacrifice it is to give in economic times as difficult as the one we’re in,” Biden wrote.

Biden has been trailing Trump’s campaign in fundraising since he joined the race for president just over a year ago. As of March 31, Trump had raised $245.5 million while Biden had raised $134.8 million. 

Trump also maintains an advantage in cash on hand after expenses with $98.5 million in spending power compared to Biden’s $26.4 million as of March 31. In a statement Monday, the Trump campaign boasted that, with the Republican Party’s coffers and authorized joint fundraising committees, it has amassed $255 million in cash on hand.

“While day-to-day life may have slowed this past month, enthusiasm and support for this President has not,” Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said. “With their time, resources, and ultimately their vote, Americans across this country continue to put their faith in President Trump.”

Biden’s wealthiest supporters have been pressuring the former vice president to try harder to attract more small-dollar donors through events such as virtual rallies and fundraisers, according to CNBC

The candidate’s first virtual rally last week was dogged by technical glitches, including weak transmission signals and periodic blackouts but Biden still managed to deliver his message blasting Trump’s performance as the nation’s leader during the biggest public health crisis in living memory.

Full details on last month’s fundraising have not yet been disclosed to the Federal Elections Commission, but in his letter to supporters Biden said his campaign received an average online donation amount of $32.63 in April. 

“When staring down the face of economic uncertainty, you chose to put your money behind me,” Biden wrote. “For that, I will always be eternally thankful.”

While more money provides candidates a strategic advantage when it comes to buying ads and reaching voters, it supplies no guarantees of election success. In 2016, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and her super PACs raised $1.2 billion, almost twice the $646 million that Trump raised. Although Clinton won the popular vote by more than 2.8 million votes, Trump won the race by winning key swing states such as Michigan, Pennsylvania and Florida.

As the Biden campaign touts its new fundraising numbers, it has also been defending the former vice president this month against allegations by a former Senate staffer who claims he sexually assaulted her in the early 1990s. In his first public remarks on the allegation during a May 1 interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Biden said the alleged assault “never happened.” 

While Trump has also had multiple women accuse him of sexual assault, the president is facing more pressing dangers to his reelection campaign: a recent Morning Consult poll found one of his key groups of supporters, voters age 65 and older, disapprove of his handling of the coronavirus.

Another recent poll found Biden had a 10-point lead over Trump among registered voters as concern about the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic continue to mount. 

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