… then why haven’t Democrats capitalized on it? That question can be taken quite literally, after seeing the DNC’s fundraising numbers for July. Granted, the reporting period ended before the Charlottesville controversy, but how did Republicans raise nearly three times as much as their counterparts?
The Republican National Committee (RNC) expanded its massive fundraising lead over the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in July as the Democrats posted their worst July haul in a decade.
The DNC raised just $3.8 million in July, compared to the $10.2 million raised by the RNC in the same month. While the GOP has no debt, the DNC added slightly to its debt in July, which now sits at $3.4 million.
The Democrats haven’t raised that little money in a July since 2007, when the party raised $3.4 million.
Let’s not forget that while August was hardly without its controversies, July wasn’t exactly all peaches and cream either. Anthony Scaramucci arrived and then departed in July, giving all sorts of distractions along the way. More broadly, Republicans muffed the ObamaCare repeal in July too, touching off a war of words between Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell that extended into August. And while most of this took place near the end of July, the animosity between Trump and the GOP, and between conservatives, moderates, and Trumpists in Congress, was apparent all month.
The news wasn’t all bad for Democrats, though. This might matter more if the field had already been level, but …
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) raised twice as much as its Republican counterpart did in July, with the two sides stockpiling cash for the 2018 midterm fight for the House majority.
The DCCC raised $6.3 million last month, compared to the $3.8 million brought in by the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).
The two committees are in about the same financial shape overall — the Democratic group has raised $66.2 million this year compared to the $63.9 million raised by the NRCC. But while the DCCC has outraised the NRCC over each of the past three months, the NRCC has about $12 million more in cash on hand.
In other words, they’ve burned through their cash at a higher rate. The DCCC and other Democratic groups tried contesting special elections in strong Republican districts, which might account for the burn rate — although Republicans ended up spending big sums in response. The Ossoff-Handel race in Georgia turned into a costly debacle for Democrats, and these fundraising numbers at least suggest that no one was impressed with their “moral victory” claims afterward.
Axios’ Jonathan Swan says that “the party brand is a disaster”:
Well, at least one can say that the Republican Party brand is not a disaster. August fundraising might tell a different story, but the media has been flogging the “Trump’s losing his base” and “Republicans fear the backlash” narratives for months. So far, neither one of these narratives have borne fruit, but don’t expect that to discourage media outlets from continuing them.