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Biden expands his fundraising advantage over Trump

Biden expands his fundraising advantage over Trump
President Joe Biden’s reelection campaign expanded its fundraising advantage in February, with plans to unload a barrage of ads against former President Donald Trump.

The Democratic president’s campaign account officially reported taking in $21 million in February, according to its report filed with the Federal Election Commission late Wednesday, ending the month with $71 million cash on hand.

That left the Biden campaign and the Democratic National Committee with a combined $97.5 million cash on hand as of the end of February, more than double the $44.8 million in the bank between Trump’s campaign and the Republican National Committee. Those totals don’t include either side’s joint fundraising committees.

While Biden is running behind Trump in early general election polling averages, his widening cash lead is an advantage. Trump’s fundraising has lagged this cycle compared to 2020, and he has diverted millions of dollars to a leadership PAC that is helping cover his legal expenses. (Biden’s campaign, by comparison, reported spending just $122,000 on legal services.)

That financial disparity is a key part of Biden’s strategy to swamp Trump in early and intense ad spending, which has already started this spring with a $30 million TV and digital ad buy. But Biden’s fundraising still lags behind the prior incumbent during the same period in 2020.

When touting his own small-dollar totals at a Dallas fundraiser Wednesday night, Biden also mocked his opponent’s financial situation.

“Donald, I’m sorry I can’t help you,” Biden said, according to a pool report.

While Biden’s campaign spent just $6.3 million in February, that number should be much larger in March. Since the president’s State of the Union address earlier this month, his campaign launched a new swing-state ad campaign and spent $1.9 million last week alone on television and digital advertising, according to AdImpact.

Biden’s campaign also touted $10 million raised in the 24 hours after the State of the Union earlier this month.

Biden’s campaign showed some ramp-up in February. Payroll grew slightly last month, from a bit shy of $1.2 million in January to more than $1.6 million in February. But that number is expected to balloon in March, when the campaign will onboard more than 300 staffers and build out its once-skeletal staff in swing states.

Other major expense categories included $1.6 million on media production and buys, $700,000 on travel and $261,000 on text messaging.

The campaign also spent nearly $2,000 at Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop, the Delaware-based chain and longtime Biden favorite that has a location near his Wilmington campaign headquarters.

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