Presidential Candidates Ranked By Fundraising

It Takes a Village's Cash to Run for President

Presidential Candidates Ranked By Fundraising
August 7, 2015

It must be tough to be a political donor these days, especially if you play both sides of the fence by donating to multiple candidates in both major parties. As of this writing, there are sixteen major declared Republican candidates and five Democratic candidates.

The wealth of choices certainly hasn’t stopped the giving. The fifteen top presidential candidates have amassed a bit over $400 million in campaign funds and we are still months away from the first primaries.

How do the candidates rank in fundraising? As of June 30th (the quarterly filing date), here are the monetary standings.

  1. Jeb Bush (Republican) – Bush has a war chest of $114.4 million, with the vast majority as Super PAC money ($103 million). $11.4 million comes from campaign contributions. As of the filing date, the Bush campaign had spent $3.1 million.

  2. Hillary Clinton (Democrat) – Clinton leads by far in campaign contributions with $47.5 million, but with only $15.6 million in Super PAC money, she comes in second with a $63.1 million total. She does lead the spending race with $18.7 million in expenditures.

  3. Ted Cruz (Republican) – The outspoken senator from Texas has $14.3 million in campaign cash and $38 million in Super PAC money for $52.3 million total. So far, Cruz has spent $5.8 million.

  4. Marco Rubio (Republican) – Rubio's war chest of $40.7 million is equally funded by campaign dollars ($12.1 million), Super PAC money ($16.1 million) and other fundraising committees ($15.8 million). Rubio has spent $3.1 million.

  5. Scott Walker (Republican) – Even though Walker just entered the race, he reportedly has $32.1 million to work with — $20 million from a super PAC, $5.9 million from his state campaign committee, and $6.2 million from other fundraising committees.

  6. Rick Perry (Republican) – The former Texas governor has only $1.1 million in campaign funds but $16.8 million in Super PAC money for a total of $17.9 million. Perry has spent only $700,000 to date.

  7. Bernie Sanders (Democrat) –The self-avowed Socialist stuck with his principles and finished sixth with $15.2 million in campaign funds and no Super PAC money. Sanders has spent $3.1 million on his campaign so far.

  8. John Kasich (Republican) – The Ohio governor only recently threw his hat into the ring, so campaign funds are lacking. However, he has $11.5 million in Super PAC money available.

  9. Chris Christie (Republican) – Similarly to Kasich, Christie has no campaign funds yet, but does have $11 million in Super PAC money to work with.

  10. Ben Carson (Republican) – Carson has $10.6 million of campaign funds, also without a Super PAC. He has spent over half of his money already ($5.9 million).

  11. Bobby Jindal (Republican) – The Louisiana governor has less than $600,000 in campaign funds, but has a total of $9.3 million in funds with $3.7 million in Super PAC money and $5 million from other committees. Jindal's spending barely registers at $0.1 million.

  12. Mike Huckabee (Republican) – The former Arkansas governor and TV/radio show host claims $8 million total, with $6 million in Super PAC money and $2 million in campaign contributions. So far, Huckabee has spent $1.4 million.

  13. Rand Paul (Republican) – The Libertarian contrarian of the group, Kentucky Senator Paul has $6.9 million to work with in campaign contributions. Paul has spent $2.8 million to date.

  14. Carly Fiorina (Republican) – Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Fiorina has $5.1 million in funds, with $1.7 million in campaign funds and $3.4 million through a Super PAC. Fiorina has spent $0.7 million so far.

  15. Lindsey Graham (Republican) – The South Carolina senator has $3.7 million in his coffers, all in campaign funds. He's spent $1.1 million so far (presumably not counting the new cell phone he needs since Donald Trump gave out his personal number).

  16. Martin O'Malley (Democrat) – It is $2 million, all in campaign funds, for the former governor of Maryland. So far, O'Malley has spent $0.7 million.

  17. Donald Trump (Republican) – The billionaire has $1.9 million in campaign funds, and has already spent $1.4 million. Who needs a Super PAC when you estimate your own worth at $10 billion?

  18. Rick Santorum (Republican) – The second-place finisher in the last Republican race is far off the money pace at $600,000 and no Super PAC. Santorum has spent two-thirds of his funds already, giving him a grim prognosis.

  19. Lincoln Chafee (Democrat) – Chaffee has $0.4 million to work with, or what we like to call $400K. He has already spent a quarter of his funds.

  20. George Pataki (Republican) – The former New York Governor has only $255,000 in funds and a lot of ground to make up. His spending is below $100,000.

Jim Webb, Democratic candidate, former Virginia Senator and Navy Secretary, does not have any fundraising data available yet.

Have you decided to run for President yet? If so, line up your donors quickly. There can’t be too many left!

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  Conversation   |   25 Comments

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Angie | 08.12.15 @ 04:27
This was certainly of interest to read! I'd like to see if any of the more frugal spenders fare well in the race - those are the ones who gain more of my respect right off!
Meredith L | 08.12.15 @ 05:37
Honestly, I hate politics and it kills me to think how much they're all spending when there are so many people in need. I don't even feel like doing the math but I'm willing to wager that the combined total would feed every elementary school child lunch for a year! Why don't we talk about priorities???
Martin | 08.12.15 @ 17:53
Hillary Clinton's plan to help the economy is just to spend all the money she raises. Just kidding. I'm sure she has a better plan written down somewhere on her server. Still going to be fascinating to see how all this breaks down on both sides. Both parties have candidates whom I think could win the general election. But they both have serious concerns as well. I think a lot of it is going to be who frames the debate in the way that favors them. If the election is ostensibly about domestic and social issues, the Dems will win. If the GOP can frame it about issues favorable to them (though those are getting less and less, it seems), then they have a fighting chance. In the end this money won't matter as once the candidates are picked there will be no shortage of money on either side.
Sarah | 08.12.15 @ 19:28
I'm going to be blunt - Talk about the money they have been given to campaign is sickening. I live hand to mouth and sometimes it doesn't even make it to mouth. They could do so much good with that money (the people who donated it, of course) but instead they give it to them to be squandered and wasted. C'mon y'all, put your money where it helps people.
Crystal | 08.12.15 @ 21:22
Can you imagine if they were asked to donate half of that to charity? Or to give to those in need? Homelessness, hunger, and poverty affect everyone.. here on our soil. As much as I think politics is important, these numbers prove we've ventured far off track.
Apryl | 08.12.15 @ 23:41
That's a mind boggling amount of money.
Angie | 08.13.15 @ 12:02
I understand that they must make public what they spend on campaigning, but are the lists of expenditures ever made public?
Daniel | 08.13.15 @ 22:42
I can only hope people take the time to find their own personal truths about all the runners not just those with the biggest wallets and most face time on the tube
Steffanie | 08.13.15 @ 22:45
An interesting read, but sadly, they spend way too much money in my opinion. It really could be spent in more important areas.
Sara | 08.13.15 @ 22:51
It is sad that people who are better per se are the ones that really stand no chance due to the money. Sad who we have running.
Kamie | 08.13.15 @ 22:52
This definitely is an interesting layout. I did not expect Trump to actually be so low.
Heather | 08.14.15 @ 02:35
Honestly, this makes me so sick to think of all this wasted money. Look at what this money could accomplish besides all the mudslinging in commercials.
Kaila tubbs | 08.14.15 @ 02:53
I found Trumps placement to be very interesting, the reality is though I just look at those numbers and think about all the good we could do for this country with that money if we used it other ways..
Nancy | 08.14.15 @ 04:43
Crazy! It amazes me how many donations these politicians receive. I'm showing my cynical side when I wonder what is promised in return.
Ron | 08.14.15 @ 10:37
I am on board with only six month long elections that our government funded and regimented debates with ALL balloted candidates. Period. What we have now is sensationalistic claptrap where moderators want to be the spectacle. I am looking at you, Fox News.
Elaine | 08.14.15 @ 16:06
Wow that is a lot of money being spent on on basically "mud slinging." If they would actually spend the money on actually speaking about their views and ideas, it would help them in the race.
Casey | 08.14.15 @ 16:27
I can't wait to see the outcome
irene | 08.14.15 @ 16:42
Interesting, but money can not always "buy" votes
Beverly | 08.14.15 @ 16:44
I'm surprised Rick Perry is so high as they just announced that he has stopped paying his helpers. It's always mind boggling that so much money is raised for campaigns, where it really doesn't do anything to help anyone. Unfortunately big donors give in the hopes that they will get a financial benefit(favor) to do so, in essence "buying the election" so that they can get what they want rather than what is good for the whole country.
Steffanie | 08.14.15 @ 17:20
I am shocked by some of numbers, even though I shouldn't be. I am alway appalled at the amount of money spent.
Zanna | 08.14.15 @ 18:01
The amount of money that is being dumped into politics is apalling. Between the dirty laundry and the finances I don't see how anyone who isn't independently wealthy could ever hope to run for office. We need a better system, where campaign contributions don't have such an overwhelming impact on the votes.
Alec | 08.14.15 @ 18:40
It blows my mind how much money these candidates spend making banners and posters, paying for dinners and hotels and travel etc. I see it's already been mentioned but they could do so much more with that money. Invest it in doing something to better their hometown or home state or anything other than trying to get publicity the way they are. I'd personally be more interested in a candidate that did charity work with a large portion of their funds. What they do with their candidacy money is a good indication of how they'll perform as president.
JIM | 08.14.15 @ 22:05
I'd say it takes more like a village, two towns and one small city's cash
John Mafnas | 11.10.15 @ 17:23
Be like Trump, Do not be own by some donor, Money is evil and dirty, you can be elected by the People with out Money, I believe Trump can do a damn go Job in the White House.
Roger | 11.11.15 @ 00:07
If Mr Trump gets in there I hope he moves the floor and cleans house. As far as Hillary Clinton goes she ain't worth a shit!
$commenter.renderDisplayableName() | 11.27.20 @ 05:41