Trump’s Reported Fund-Raising Tops Biden’s for First Time

Trump’s Reported Fund-Raising Tops Biden’s for First Time

Former President Donald J. Trump and the Republican Party out-raised President Biden and the Democrats last month for the first time in this election cycle, according to campaign officials, as Mr. Biden’s pace of fund-raising slowed significantly from March.

Mr. Trump’s advisers have said privately that his campaign, together with the Republican Party and all of their affiliated committees, raised $76.2 million in April. The Biden campaign said on Monday evening that it had raised $51 million in April with the Democratic National Committee — which was just over half as much as they raised in March, and also a touch less than they raised in February.

In filings with the Federal Election Commission on Monday, Mr. Biden’s campaign committee reported taking in $24.2 million in April, compared with $43.8 million in March.

Mr. Trump’s campaign still lags far behind in total cash on hand, the April filings show. Mr. Biden’s campaign ended April with $84.5 million on hand, holding roughly steady from the preceding month, while Mr. Trump’s campaign had $48 million in net cash on hand, up from $45 million in March.

Mr. Trump had been widely expected to close the fund-raising gap with Mr. Biden once he secured the Republican nomination, because he can now raise money in tandem with the Republican National Committee, collecting checks of more than $800,000 per donor. Mr. Biden has been gathering such large checks for months with his party, building an overall war chest with the Democratic National Committee and their shared accounts of $192 million.

The Biden operation’s cash on hand was flat month over month as the campaign invested in a series of offices across the battlegrounds, as well as an early advertising blitz.

Mr. Trump is leading Mr. Biden in many polls, including recent New York Times/Siena College/Philadelphia Inquirer surveys that had the former president ahead in five of six top battleground states. But Democrats have held a significant cash advantage, largely because Mr. Biden, as the incumbent, was able to lock into a joint fund-raising agreement with the party months before Mr. Trump, who had primary challengers until early March.

Mr. Trump also continues to spent millions of dollars on legal bills, the filings show. Save America, a committee that has been used to pay his legal bills, laid out $3.3 million in April for that purpose.

The filings on Monday provide a partial view, since some of the committees do not file reports until July, and some of the details of how Mr. Trump’s money has flowed between the various allied committees remain unclear. It is not clear how much Mr. Trump and the Republicans had on hand, in total, at the end of the month.

Still, the filings and campaign statements reflect a busy fund-raising month for Mr. Trump. In early April, his campaign and the party reported raising more than $50 million at a private dinner in Palm Beach, Fla.

April was a slower month for Mr. Biden, in contrast with a March that was packed with marquee events, including his State of the Union address and a star-studded event at Radio City Music Hall with his Democratic predecessors. The campaign and the party reported raising $90 million in March.

In February, the Biden campaign reported raising more than $53 million across its committees with the party.

Mr. Biden’s campaign manager, Julie Chavez Rodriguez, said in a statement on Monday that the new figures represented “strong, consistent grass-roots enthusiasm.” She added, “Trump’s operation continues to burn through cash and lag behind our growing and aggressive campaign, with no ground game and no demonstrable interest in talking to the voters they need to win.”

Later in the evening, supporters of the president received a very different message in an email pitch for cash: “We’re worried,” it read. “We’re not even close to the amount we raised last month at this point,” the email said.

In a statement released by Mr. Trump’s campaign on Monday night, he said, “The only people left in America who support Crooked Joe Biden are out-of-touch billionaires in Hollywood, and it turns out even they are done giving to a failing campaign.” The campaign added that his haul “is especially remarkable when you consider he has been confined to a courtroom for nearly nine hours a day over the past four weeks.”

Mr. Trump’s campaign itself took in $9.4 million of the total haul, mostly transfers from a joint fund-raising committee that has served as his primary vessel for contributions. The Trump campaign spent very little — just $5.5 million, including $1.4 million on mail and postage, more than $600,000 on legal consulting and nearly $500,000 on event staging.

The Republican National Committee took in $32 million in April, and ended the month with nearly $39 million on hand. The Democratic National Committee reported raising $35.5 million in April, ending with $62 million on hand.

Save America, the committee that has paid Mr. Trump’s legal fees, received a $6 million transfer in early April from Mr. Trump’s main joint fund-raising committee, the filings show. It was the first such transfer recorded this calendar year, and the largest to date this cycle. Since February 2023, the joint fund-raising committee has sent a total of $14 million to Save America.

Save America also received $2.75 million in April from a super PAC backing Mr. Trump, Make America Great Again Inc., and $183,000 from a new joint fund-raising committee Mr. Trump has with the Republican Party.

MAGA Inc. reported raising $12.8 million in April, including $10 million from Timothy Mellon, a Wyoming businessman and heir to the Mellon banking fortune who has now given a total of $25 million to the group. Mr. Mellon has also given $25 million to a super PAC backing Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s independent candidacy for president, according to that group’s filings for April, including a $5 million contribution last month.

Mr. Biden’s campaign spent slightly less in April, laying out $25.2 million compared with $29.2 million in March.

Mr. Kennedy’s campaign filed its April report on Friday, days ahead of schedule, showing that it had raised $10.7 million. As expected, that included an $8 million infusion of cash from his running mate, the Silicon Valley investor Nicole Shanahan, who has put a total of $10 million of her fortune into the campaign since she was named to the ticket in March.

At the same time, traditional fund-raising for Mr. Kennedy appears to have remained steady in the $2 million to $3 million range, per month, this year. Aside from Ms. Shanahan’s contributions, the campaign raised less than $2.7 million in April, down from about $3.4 million in non-Shanahan donations in March.

But the campaign’s expenses have escalated sharply in recent months, as Mr. Kennedy seeks ballot access in all 50 states. The campaign reported spending $6.5 million in April, including $2.2 million to Accelevate 2020, its primary ballot access consultant.

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