Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders continues to dominate the fundraising race during the presidential primaries, bringing in close to $46 million in March alone, according to the most recent data available from the Federal Election Commission. That one-month haul means in the first quarter of 2016, Sanders has collected a total of $110,751,553 for his direct campaign committee — by far the most in the field.
Clinton out-raised Sanders last year, but it’s been a different story in 2016. As Sanders converted momentum from feisty debate showings and overflow rallies into wins at caucuses and primaries, his fundraising numbers also increased. In March, Sanders delivered in some key states, winning in Colorado and Minnesota on Super Tuesday and in Michigan a week later. And he finished the month strong, winning five out of the six final contests.
Although Sanders has mostly trailed Clinton in delegates, these wins were often seen as potential turning points in the race. While a variety of factors can compel people to contribute to political campaigns and causes, it looks like Sanders’ supporters felt more inclined to donate to his campaign as it seemed to become increasingly viable.
In general, candidates have raised more money in this quarter than they did previously — not particularly noteworthy considering the field has narrowed and primary results indicate who is likely to go on to the general election. But the extent of that uptick gets thrown into sharp relief when looking at overall fundraising totals. With the exception of Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, the remaining candidates raised more money in the first three months of 2016 than they raised in total in all of 2015.
These totals reflect money raised for a candidate’s official committee, and don’t take into account supportive super PACs. When including super PAC totals, Clinton has raised the most money of the presidential hopefuls, buoyed by about $86 million in super PAC funds.
The next round of fundraising figures is released on May 20 and will cover money raised in April. It will be interesting to see how the most recent round of voting results — big wins for Clinton and Donald Trump in New York and the greater Northeast, for example — impact fundraising totals for each of the candidates.