The Trump 2020 campaign is much, much more formidable than 2016

Just look at the news that Team Trump 2020 has raised more than $30 million in the first quarter of 2019. This despite – or perhaps because of – all the noise surrounding the Democratic candidates in the first months of this year. Trump has thus already matched or even outraised Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris, the leading Democratic fundraisers, combined. He now has over $40 million in his war chest, a formidable sum.

More remarkably, the fundraising has all been done beneath the media radar. The 2020 Trump campaign is in some ways the inverse of 2016. Three years ago, Trump was in the insurgent who got all the publicity while being outrageous, while the Democratic machine busily accrued vast sums of money to shove Hillary Clinton into the White House. Now, Trump has his own machine.

It’s from small donors, too, which is generally the more popular (or populist) way to fill campaign coffers these days. Some 99 percent of Trump donations are for $200 or less, according to the campaign, with an average contribution of just over $34.