President Joe Biden's reelection campaign is strategically hosting an exclusive end-of-year retreat to bolster support and secure vital funding from high-dollar donors. With the primaries just weeks away, the campaign is leaving no stone unturned to ensure a strong foundation of financial backing.
Set to take place at a prestigious Washington-area hotel, the retreat will be orchestrated by a trio of influential campaign insiders: Jeffrey Katzenberg, a co-chairman of Biden's campaign and renowned Hollywood mogul; Rufus Gifford, who, leaving his position at the State Department, now plays a crucial role in leading fundraising efforts; and Michael Pratt, a former Democratic National Committee fundraising chair who recently joined Biden's team.
While the event is confidential, sources indicate that several hundred donors are expected to attend. The guest list includes notable figures like White House Deputy Chief of Staff Jen O’Malley Dillon, the driving force behind Biden's successful 2020 campaign, who is anticipated to lead strategic discussions.
Challenges Amid Fundraising Efforts
Recent events have showcased the campaign's proactive approach to fundraising. For instance, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has spearheaded meetings with top Democratic surrogates to leverage their donor networks in support of the campaign.
These maneuvers come as President Biden grapples with challenging poll numbers in key swing states, concerns surrounding his age, management of international conflicts like the one in Gaza, and the nation's economy, which can potentially fracture his political coalition.
A recent Bloomberg News/Morning Consult poll reveals growing dissatisfaction among swing-state Democrats, with 23% of Biden's 2020 voters expressing an unfavorable view of him now, compared to 17% of 2020 Trump voters who have soured on the former president.
In this poll, Biden trails Trump in all seven battleground states, though most remain within the margin of error. A critical issue for voters, the economy remains a challenge for Biden. Polls indicate that voters trust Trump more on various economic matters, including housing, interest rates, inflation, and budget balancing.
Almost one-third of Generation Z voters in swing states express a lack of trust in both Biden and Trump to handle the economy. Trust in Biden on this issue has also declined among Black voters, compared to October when the first Bloomberg News/Morning Consult poll was conducted.
A national poll by Reuters places Biden at 38% with Trump at 36%, showcasing a tight race.
Biden's Fundraising Strategy
To counter these challenges, Biden's campaign aims to assure donors with evidence of increased small-dollar contributions, a growing email subscriber list, and coordinated fundraising efforts with state-level parties.
They anticipate an improved standing for Biden in the coming months as Republican presidential candidates vie for their party's nomination. Campaign spokesman Kevin Munoz expressed optimism, stating, "We continue to see sustained enthusiasm from our supporters across the country who understand the stakes of this election and are deeply committed to ensuring the president has the resources we need to win next November." Additionally, President Biden has embarked on an extensive fundraising tour, holding numerous events in Washington, Los Angeles, Denver, and Boston.
This proactive approach has yielded impressive results, with Biden raising $15 million in just five days. With a fundraising target of approximately $67 million, Biden's finance team is working tirelessly to secure the necessary resources for his reelection bid.
Unlike previous candidates, Biden can raise significantly more from individual donors, potentially up to $929,600, to be distributed among his campaign, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and state parties. Biden has demonstrated considerable fundraising prowess, reporting over $71 million in the most recent fundraising quarter, with $91 million in cash reserves at the start of October, surpassing his Republican competitors in the current cycle, though falling short of Trump's fundraising achievements during the same period of his first term.