Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) — a millionaire, democratic socialist who is running for president — sent out a fundraising email from his campaign manager, telling single digit donors to start coughing up more cash.
Since his 2016 bid, Sanders has made the fact that he doesn’t have many big-ticket donors one of the key features of his campaign. He claims that he isn’t bought and paid for by millionaires, alluding that other candidates are. In 2016, he routinely bragged that his average donation size was just 27 dollars.
According to a recent campaign email, Sanders’ average donation size for the 2020 race has dipped to 14 dollars. His campaign manager claimed that this dip is hurting their campaign because it is well below the average donation size of Sanders’ 17 other Democratic competitors.
Although Sanders’ campaign claims they are falling behind, the latest fundraising totals put them millions ahead of any other candidate.
Q1 self-reported fundraising totals by Democratic presidential candidates:
Sanders: $18 million
Harris: $12 million
Buttigieg: $ 7 million
Yang: $ 1.7 million
O'Rourke: $ 9.4 million
Booker: $ 5 million
Klobuchar: $ 5.2 million
— Decision Desk HQ (@DecisionDeskHQ) April 8, 2019
That didn’t prevent the campaign from hounding their smaller donors. In a fundraising email sent Tuesday, the campaign manager Faiz Shakir wrote:
“Right now, most first-time donors are giving three dollars. If you could possibly chip in $10, we’d be back on track to hold our fundraising advantage. And that’s important, because if we do, we’ll win. What do you say?”
This email comes on the heels of Sanders brushing off criticisms for his millionaire status. As IJR previously reported, Sanders has been bragging about his “international bestseller” book, noting that is isn’t “a crime” to become a millionaire after writing a “New York Times bestseller, that was translated five or six times.”
Sanders has long been a proponent of making millionaires and billionaires pay more in hopes that they will foot the bill for the socialist policies the senator supports, like “Medicare for All” and free college.
With his latest email, it looks as though Sanders is looking for everyone to cough up a bit more to help him deliver the democratic socialist haven he’s been pitching since entering office.