Bernie Sanders Out-Raises All the Republicans, Except for One Disgusting Loophole

What's most surprising to many political observers is how the Sanders campaign on the Democratic side has managed to tap small donors to quickly raise large totals. As of its most recent reporting, the campaign raised $15 million from 400,000 donations from 200,000 donors. This puts it ahead of its Republican opponents. In contrast, Jeb Bush raised $11.4 million. Ted Cruz raised around $14 million. No GOP campaign matched the Sanders haul.

But there's a catch. While Sanders is creating the broadest base of financial support, recruiting donors at a much quicker rate than other insurgent candidates like Ron Paul in 2008, and out-raising his Republican opponents' official campaigns, there is another factor at play: super PACs.

These entities, created by the Citizens United Supreme Court decision, allows billionaires and corporations to effectively spend whatever they want in support of a candidate. While they are not supposed to officially coordinate with candidates, this law has been more or less openly flouted this cycle.

Bush's super PAC raised $103 million, around 10 times as much as the candidate raised through his actual campaign. Cruz's super PACs raised over $30 million, twice as much as what his campaign raised.

These numbers are evidence of the Citizens United bump, and make it so a candidate doesn't have to go out and recruit lots of small donors and actually meet lots of Americans in order to raise money. Bush's super PAC has only 9,900 donors; and they're the only fundraisers he really has to listen to. 

Thanks to the Supreme Court, this is the way things are now. 

#story_page_ below_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.