There are still twenty months before the us presidential election but the race to the funding has already started for the democrats who defeated the reminder of the contributions, even minimal, of the voters.
The twelve main declared candidates are conspiring against him, for the moment, the donations from businesses and groups to campaign (PAC), which can contribute to strokes of millions of dollars, and are turning to the voters.
According to the polls, they are willing to put the hand in the pocket to play a more important role in the political game and counter the financial influence of the companies.
The candidates will soon be required to notify the federal election Commission (FEC) the total amount of donations received in the first quarter. The results should show that the money, which plays a leading role in the campaign, just more of the voters.
– “They want to give” –
For the November parliamentary elections, “there has been a lot of energy on the side democrat and I don’t see the donations to candidates to slow down, especially then, that the president, Donald Trump participates in the election”, explains to the AFP Patrick Burgwinkle, head of the communications group’s End Citizens United, which advocates for a reform of political financing.
According to ActBlue, an NGO specializing in micro-donations, the 2018 campaign has generated $ 1.6 billion in donations, with an average contribution of $ 39.
The voters democrats “want to give”, adds Mr. Burgwinkle, “provided that the candidates commit themselves truly to reform our system”.
The democrats are demanding an overhaul of the electoral funding since 2010. The supreme Court had repealed the ceiling on donations by companies and unions in a decision hotly contested, Citizens United vs FEC.
This decision has also allowed some groups to campaign independent (Super-PAC) to raise tremendous sums of money for their candidates, a large majority of republicans. Even if the democrats can count on the support of wealthy donors such as billionaire Tom Steyer.
Several candidates have assured that they would render account to the people, and not for large businesses or generous donors.
“Money corrupts politics, he is in control of everything”, was launched in February, senator Kirsten Gillibrand during a meeting in Des Moines (Iowa), explaining why she refused the gifts of the CAP.
Like other candidates, she made a personal appeal to the individual donations. Millions of emails are sent to the voters to fund the costly field operations, in particular thanks to huge databases of compiled data on the social networks. In a message, senator Cory Booker asks as well “even just a dollar”.
In 2016, liberal senator Bernie Sanders had focused his primary campaign on the reform of election financing. In February, he came with a bang in the race for 2020 by raising $ 5.9 million in 24 hours. More than 220,000 people throughout the country have given $ 27 in average.
“Powerful special interests may have money, but we the people,” he responded on Twitter.
– Small cuts –
Donald Trump is not at rest. The president has offered his candidacy for 2020 the day after his inauguration. Since then, it would have raised more than $ 100 million, according to figures dating back to October.
“For democrats, it’s going to be a hunt for small cuts,” says Anthony Corrado, Colby college.
“Bernie Sanders has proven in 2016 that could largely fund a campaign with small contributions thanks to the enthusiasm of the voters,” explains the specialist of the funding policy.
Beto O’rourke, entered Thursday in the race for the primary, used ActBlue to manage a page dedicated to donations on his campaign site.
“If 100,000 people give $ 10 per month, in the end it made a lot of money,” says Anthony Corrado.