Sunday, 22 May 2016

Trump's campaign dwarfed by Clinton's

Trump's campaign dwarfed by Clinton's, FEC reports open up

 New FEC reports show that the likely Democratic nominee will start with a huge infrastructure advantage.

 At the outset of the general election, Hillary Clinton’s campaign looks like a well-oiled juggernaut next to Donald Trump’s vastly smaller, self-funded operation, a political analysis of Federal Election Commission reports filed Friday found.
 Through the end of last month, the period covered by the most recent FEC filings, Trump’s campaign had spent less than a third as much Clinton’s ($57 million to $182 million) and had assembled a staff about one-tenth the size of her (70 employees to 732), with a fraction as many offices (Trump last month paid $101,000 in rent vs. $328,000 for Clinton),

 the analysis found. Trump — a billionaire rookie candidate whose own money had accounted for 75 percent of the $59 million brought in by his campaign — is moving quickly to buttress his campaign operations, partly by launching a fundraising and field operation in coordination with the Republican National Committee.

 He did little to assemble the trappings of a traditional campaign during a chaotic primary during which he dispatched 17 rivals for the Republican presidential nomination, many of whom ran more traditional, and expensive, campaigns.
 The $57 million Trump had spent through the end of April is only slightly more than the $54 million spent by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who dropped out of the race more than two months ago, and it’s far less than the $81 million spent by Ted Cruz.

The Texas senator assembled a sophisticated micro-targeting machine that helped keep in the race until he dropped out this month, after being trounced by Trump in the Indiana primary. Last month, as Trump was struggling to put away Cruz, Trump’s campaign spent $2.7 million on advertising, while Clinton spent $12 million on digital and broadcast media buys, as she worked to put away her rival for the Democratic nomination Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

 Yet Clinton’s campaign appeared to be preparing for the general election, spending far less than Sanders, whose $207 million in total spending marks him as the cycle’s biggest spender. He continued spending briskly in April, dropping $38.6 million, as compared to $23.9 million for Clinton. Sanders spent almost twice as much as Clinton on media and payroll (despite a slightly smaller staff), as well as more on online advertising and direct mail. As a result, Sanders entered this month with only $5.8 million in the bank, compared to Clinton’s $30 million. Additionally, unlike either Sanders or Trump, both of whom have eschewed super PACs,

Clinton is backed by the deep-pocketed Priorities USA Action. It raised $8.6 million last month, more than a third of which came from Univision chairman Haim Saban and his wife, Cheryl, according to its FEC report, which showed it finished last month with $47 million in the bank.
 A handful of super PACs are vying to raise big money for Trump, but they have gotten off to a slow start, as they’ve struggled with in-fighting. And Clinton also has a massive head start over Trump when it come to analytics, polling and building models of likely voters and turnout plans. Trump, who only recently hired a pollster, still had not spent a dime on polling through the end of last month, while Clinton spent $896,000 in April alone.

 Trump did start beefing up other areas of his operation last month, his FEC report showed. For instance, he spent $931,000 on direct mail, as compared to only $398,000 spent by Clinton, according to her report. And Trump continued to be among the biggest spenders in field on branded merchandise, including his signature Make America Great Again hats. His campaign last month spent $856,000 on hats, t-shirts, mugs and stickers, versus the $88,000 Clinton spent on merchandise.