May 18, 2024

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Biden expands his financial advantage over Trump

Biden expands his financial advantage over Trump

President Biden's re-election campaign received $71 million Available at the end of February, more than double the $33.5 million in former President Donald J. Trump's campaign account, As Democrats continue to expand their fundraising advantage over Republicans in the presidential race.

The cash disparity was detailed in filings with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday, when campaigns and some presidential committees had a deadline to submit fundraising and spending reports for February.

Mr. Trump packed his campaign account in February, adding more than $3 million to cash on hand since January, when he finished the month with about $30 million on hand. But Biden's campaign, which ended January with $56 million, added $15 million in February.

While Mr. Trump leads Mr. Biden in most national polls, Mr. Biden and the Democratic Party have a growing cash advantage — a gap that has become one of the most pressing issues facing Mr. Trump, who has been busy wooing some people. The Republican Party's top financiers attended private dinners at Mar-a-Lago, his club and residence in Palm Beach, Florida.

However, the financial picture remains incomplete: Trump and Biden are both raising money through joint fundraising committees, which will not report until mid-April. These committees funnel money to campaigns, which are better able to pay salaries and buy advertising time at lower rates guaranteed to candidates.

Over the weekend, Biden's team announced $53 million in fundraising In February he passed through committees supporting his re-election bid, totaling $155 million, up from $130 million at the end of January. April reports will provide more details on how and by whom this money was raised.

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Mr. Biden, as the incumbent, has been raising money for months alongside the Democratic National Committee — a massive operation building the groundwork needed in the general election.

Mr. Biden will also be supported by more than $1 billion pledged by outside groups to support his bid — money separate from the party accounts presented Wednesday.

The Trump campaign told Fox News on Wednesday that it had raised a total of $20.3 million through a joint fundraising committee, with $42 million coming between the two groups.

Some of the advantages Mr. Biden enjoys are those of a traditional incumbent. It was only in February that Mr. Trump became the presumptive Republican nominee, and immediately set about dismantling the Republican National Committee and filling it with loyalists. The same committee reported raising $10.7 million in February, and ended the month with $11.3 million.

Trump's legal battles have generally been a drain on his campaign funds. He faces four criminal indictments as well as civil cases, which have proven costly. Last year, committees supporting him spent at least $50 million on legal expenses, filings show, and those costs are likely to swell as he prepares for potential trials this year.

The major political action committee supporting Mr. Trump, Make America Great Again Inc., reported raising $12.8 million in February, with $25.5 million on hand, up from $19.7 million at the end of January.

The report filed Wednesday for one of Mr. Trump's committees — a leadership political action committee called Save America, which he used to pay his legal bills — said it had $4 million at the end of February, down from more than $6 million in January.

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This change appears to be attributable to a slight increase in Mr. Trump's legal expenses. The group spent nearly $5.6 million in February on bills for the legal teams defending him.