Klobuchar posts her best fundraising quarter to date

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar raised $11.4 million over the past three months, the best fundraising quarter to date for the senator from Minnesota.

Klobuchar’s October-December fourth-quarter figures – announced early Friday morning – are a huge boost from her July-September third-quarter numbers, when she raised just $4.8 million.

SANDERS ANNOUNCES MASSIVE FUNDRAISING HAUL

But her haul paled in comparison to top tier-contenders for the Democratic nomination -- such as Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and former Vice President Joe Biden.

“We feel very good. I know we’ll be coming out with our numbers shortly, and it’s the best quarter we’ve ever had. And that’s a good thing,” Klobuchar said on Thursday evening while campaigning in Iowa, hours ahead of the release of her report.

But she acknowledged that “I never thought I would match some of the front runners … but the point is this, I am in the top five solidly in this state (Iowa).”

Klobuchar’s team highlighted that 145,126 donors contributed to the campaign in the fourth quarter, with the average online contribution of $32. They noted that 92 percent of donors gave less than $200.

“Our campaign has seen a massive surge in grassroots support and this has allowed us to make critical campaign investments,” Klobuchar campaign manager Justin Buoen said.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota campaigns in Concord, NH in October 2019

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota campaigns in Concord, NH in October 2019

And pointing to the senator’s performances in the past three presidential primary debates – which many pundits have praised – Buoen highlighted that Senator Klobuchar’s standout performances on the debate stage in October, November, and December resonated with voters and caucus-goers across the country. As a result, we have been able to double our staff in Iowa and New Hampshire and make critical investments in Nevada and South Carolina as well as prepare for Super Tuesday.”

Klobuchar starting spending her new campaign cash immediately. She also announced on Friday that she was going up with a new TV commercial in Iowa and New Hampshire - the two states that kick off the presidential primary and caucus nominating calendar - that's backed by a six-figure ad buy.

DEBATE PERFORMANCE PAYING OFF FOR KLOBUCHAR

Twenty-four hours before the moderate senator from Minnesota announced her figures, Sanders unveiled an eye-popping report. The populist senator who’s making his second straight White House bid hauled in $34.5 million the past three months, the highest quarterly total of any of the Democratic presidential candidates this election cycle.

Buttigieg announced on Wednesday that he raised $24.7 in the fourth quarter, with Biden reporting on Thursday that he brought in $22.7 million the past three months, his best quarterly total to date.

Tech entrepreneur Andrew Yang – a one-time long-shot who’s now firmly part of the middle tier of presidential nomination contenders – raised $16.5 million in the fourth quarter, his best showing to date.

President Trump's re-election campaign said on Thursday that it raised $46 million in the fourth quarter.

Campaigns aiming to showcase their fundraising figures have been blasting out their fourth-quarter numbers this week, with campaigns seeing lackluster cash hauls likely waiting until the end of January deadline to report their figures to the Federal Election Commission.

Campaign cash, along with public opinion polling, has been a crucial barometer of a candidate’s popularity and a campaign’s strength. Fundraising dollars could be used to run TV, radio and digital ads, beef up grassroots voter outreach and build up staff. And, the fourth-quarter fundraising figures – the last quarterly report before Iowa kicks off the primary and caucus presidential nominating calendar on Feb. 3 – will be scrutinized heavily by political pundits