In just a few short months, Bernie Sanders’ campaign for U.S. president in 2016 has rapidly hit a number of significant milestones, from overflowing crowds at rallies to a quick rise in voter polls—and on Thursday, he reached another one: a $15 million fundraising haul.
While it’s just a fraction of the $45 million that current Democratic party frontrunner Hillary Clinton raised in the same quarter—from April 30 to June 30—Sanders’ financial boon is significant because the funds came from 250,000 donors, most of whom made small contributions online.
That signals the continued widespread support of Sanders’ left-leaning, populist message calling for, among other things, “political revolution.”
And as the Guardian points out, “Barack Obama attracted only 180,000 donors during the first quarter of his presidential campaign in 2007, which has been considered the benchmark for online fundraising by an insurgent candidate in modern presidential politics.”
Unlike Clinton, who does much of her fundraising through private events and the Priorities USA Super PAC [Political Action Committee], Sanders has stayed true to his call for campaign finance reform and refused the use of a super PAC to raise funds.
Pulling in $15 million from small donors lends credence to a central platform of his campaign. The senator has spent his decades-long political career railing against “grotesque and obscene” wealth inequalities in the U.S. and has made economic reform one of the hallmarks of his call for political revolution.
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