Biden Struggles in Polls But Leading Trump in Number of Donors - The World News

Biden Struggles in Polls But Leading Trump in Number of Donors

President Biden may be struggling in national polls, but he recently overtook former President Donald J. Trump in at least one important measure: the total number of donors who have given to his campaign, which is often seen as a proxy for voter engagement.

Where each candidate has more donors or
fewer donors compared with 2020, by county

Across most of the country, Mr. Trump has fewer donors than he did at the same time in 2020, while Mr. Biden has more.

Detailed maps of where people have donated to the Trump and Biden campaigns in 2024 and in 2020 show that Mr. Biden is overperforming and that Mr. Trump is underperforming in many of the battleground states they will need to win, in comparison with where they were at this point in the 2020 cycle.

As of the end of March, Mr. Biden had 1.1 million unique individual donors, compared with one million for Mr. Trump. The difference is apparent in their total fund-raising hauls: Mr. Biden’s campaign committee has taken in nearly $160 million so far in this election cycle, compared with Mr. Trump’s $114 million.

The rematch between the two candidates offers an unusual opportunity for comparison. A New York Times analysis of data on individual donors from filings with the Federal Election Commission shows that Mr. Trump had fewer individual donors at the end of March than he did at the same time in 2020, while Mr. Biden had more than he did in 2020.

Note: Lines show the total number of unique individual donors who gave to either Trump or Biden by the date of their first donation.

The New York Times

Mr. Biden’s robust fund-raising is in stark contrast to his weakness in the polls. New surveys from The Times, Siena College and The Philadelphia Inquirer show him trailing Mr. Trump in several crucial battleground states, as Mr. Biden’s popularity has eroded among young people and voters of color.

The two candidates’ positions have reversed since March 2020, when Mr. Trump was running for re-election and Mr. Biden was closing in on his party’s nomination.

Mr. Biden was a late-breaking favorite in the 2020 primary race, having lagged for months in the polls behind his Democratic rivals. He became the party’s presumptive nominee on April 8, after the withdrawal of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

This year, Mr. Trump was long the prohibitive favorite in the Republican primary race, but did not become the presumptive nominee until early March, when his last opponent, Nikki Haley, bowed out of the contest.

The changing circumstances between March 2020 and this year are also apparent outside of battleground states, when total donors to both candidates are compared with the previous cycle.

In Delaware, Mr. Biden has roughly twice as many donors as Mr. Trump, an analysis of contributions by ZIP codes shows. But compared with March 2020, he has lost ground to Mr. Trump – which makes sense, because Mr. Biden’s home state was the early donor engine of his primary campaign in 2019 and early 2020.

Where each candidate has more donors or
fewer donors compared with 2020, by ZIP code

In New York City, Mr. Biden had a slight rise in donors relative to March 2020, while his number of donors in Manhattan has fallen steeply. The shift likely reflects his late emergence at the time as the party’s nominee. Mr. Trump has picked up donor support just outside the city on Long Island, which has been trending toward the Republican Party.

Where each candidate has more donors or
fewer donors compared with 2020, by ZIP code

In Arizona, which is a battleground state in 2024, Mr. Biden has picked up donors. He won the state in 2020 but trails Mr. Trump in 2024 polls there.

On close inspection, a few ZIP codes stand out. At the end of March 2020, Mr. Biden had about 150 donors in the ZIP code 86001, which makes up part of Flagstaff. This year, he had almost 300. Mr. Trump’s donors there declined to about 130 from about 150. Many ZIP codes around Tucson, Phoenix and Scottsdale also had an increase in Biden donors.

In neighboring Nevada, Mr. Trump has generally drawn more donors in the Las Vegas area than he did in 2020. The Times’s latest polls found that Mr. Biden’s support in that state had dropped from 2020.

Where each candidate has more donors or
fewer donors compared with 2020, by ZIP code

In Michigan, Mr. Biden had about 11 percent more donors than in 2020, driven by gains around Ann Arbor and in more traditionally conservative western parts of the state. But Mr. Biden did not gain donors in Dearborn, which has more residents with Middle Eastern ancestry or in Detroit, which is majority Black. Mr. Trump’s number of donors in the state fell by 8 percent, mostly because of dips in the Detroit suburbs and near Grand Rapids.

The latest Times/Siena polls show Mr. Trump leading among registered voters in Michigan, another battleground state.

North Carolina and South Carolina

Where each candidate has more donors or
fewer donors compared with 2020, by ZIP code

The shifts in North Carolina and South Carolina are another illustration of how circumstances have changed for the two candidates. In South Carolina, Mr. Biden has lost donors compared with where he was in 2020, which makes sense: In 2020, the state had a competitive Democratic primary, which Mr. Biden won, setting off his march to the nomination. This year, it was Mr. Trump who had the competitive primary in South Carolina.

In North Carolina, a battleground state, Mr. Biden has gained donors relative to Mr. Trump since 2020. This could be welcome news for Democrats, who see the state as potentially winnable for Mr. Biden, after Mr. Trump won it narrowly in 2020.

Donors in battleground states in the 2024 cycle

Notes: Bars show the estimated number of individual donors who have given to each candidate in each state as of March 31. Numbers are estimates because of potential duplicate names or changes of address within the data.

The New York Times


Data includes donations reported to the Federal Election Commission by the Trump 2020 campaign, the Trump 2024 campaign, Trump Make America Great Again Committee, the Trump Victory joint fund-raising committee, Trump Save America Joint Fundraising Committee, Trump 47 Committee, Trump National Committee JFC, the Biden campaign, the Biden Victory Fund joint fund-raising committee and the Biden Action Fund joint fund-raising committee. Additional donations processed on behalf of those committees and reported by the online fund-raising platforms ActBlue and WinRed are also included.

The estimated number of individual donors was determined based on a unique combination of contributor name, state and ZIP code. Donors with invalid addresses were filtered out of the analysis. Dates of first donation were determined by the earliest contribution date for a unique individual donor to a 2020 or 2024 committee affiliated with either candidate.

Donations are counted through March 31 starting from the earliest announcement by one of the two candidates each cycle: April 25, 2019, for Mr. Biden in the 2020 cycle and November 15, 2022, for Mr. Trump in the 2024 cycle.

Areas where the number of donors changed by five or fewer are not shown.

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