Day 73: 8/1/19

Things were quieting down on Thursday. Kirsten Gillibrand continued to ignore her financial supporters, Joe Biden joked about his debate closing statement flub, and Julian Castro tried some fearmongering to raise funds.

Much calmer today

Michael Bennet squeaked out a victory in number of emails sent with 4 to his non-donors, while Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Julian Castro, Tulsi Gabbard, and Jay Inslee all sent 3 each. One interesting thing to note is that for the fifth day in a row, Kirsten Gillibrand has not sent any donor emails.

Gillibrand is still short the donors she needs to get into the September debates, so her focus is on bringing in new donors. I’m still perplexed over her strategy of not reaching out to previous donors at all. Gillibrand makes some good points in her emails, such as yesterday when she laid out her post-debate fundraising stats.

I’ve seen bar charts like that before. I suspect it’s an ActBlue thing.

The last donor email I received from Gillibrand was on July 22. Since then, I have received 14 non-donor emails from her, with surveys, discussion on current events (9/11 bill passing, Trump suing to keep his tax returns secret, etc.), and many, many asks for money.

Whenever there’s a large discrepancy in donor vs. non-donor counts, I always wonder why. Tulsi Gabbard and Eric Swalwell did this at the start, not sending my non-donor account any emails (Swalwell still doesn’t send my non-donor account anything, though my donor account occasionally gets an email). Bill de Blasio, like Kirsten Gillibrand, tends to forget about his donors. I don’t know if it’s intentional or an oversight, and if it is intentional, what value comes from ignoring a chunk of people who have already contributed to you?

The July debates are over but not forgotten.

Everyone was still high on their debate night success. According to the emails I received, Julian Castro was a debate winner according to CNN and the Washington Post.

Amy Klobuchar also touted the Washington Post as giving her a victory.

Marianne Williamson told me multiple media outlets assured her that she had knocked it out of the park.

Cory Booker had many pundits declaring him the victor of the debates, and decided that with even Joe Biden calling him “Future President,” he definitely was a winner.

Joe Biden himself sent out an email about 16.5 hours after he flubbed his final line in his closing statement. 8 of the other candidates on stage with him plugged their websites. Biden attempted to recruit people via text, but with all of the websites, he screwed up. “Go to… Joe… 3-0-3-3-o…”

Many people were scratching their head at that, and several campaigns’ supporters pounced on URLs such as and to push people toward their preferred candidates. Biden’s campaign was left scrambling for damage control:

We’ll be honest. We’ve spent all morning brainstorming ideas for a clever email to send you about 30330.

(In case you missed last night’s debate, Joe meant to say “Text Joe to 30330” but left a word out. Oops.)

The funny part is we text Joe all the time about emails like this. We’ll wonder “should we send an email responding to this Trump attack?” and ask Joe what he thinks.

The next time we text him, we want him to know how many grassroots donations have come in. So whether it’s $3.03, $30.33, or $303.30, Joe will love to hear that supporters like you are chipping in what they can to this campaign.

Team Joe

Instead of his usual $5, $25, $50, $100, and $250 donation buttons, this email had a set of $3.03, $30.33, and $303.30 donation buttons.

P.S. If you’re reading this on your phone, text Joe to 30330

Team Joe

Despite the flubbed line, many news sites actually are declaring Biden a winner of the night.

Steve Bullock is declaring himself a winner as well, boasting of his highlights during the debate and saying that even a Trump adviser from 2016 is saying Bullock is the candidate he’s most scared of. Whether that “he” referred to Trump or the adviser was left ambiguous.

Month end came and went, time to start scaling back on donations.

I have never seen a candidate come out and say they were disappointed in their performance, but I have seen many campaigns express shock and disbelief at how the night after their candidate appeared on the debate stage, a huge wave of donations came in. I marvel at how many “didn’t realize” that this was going to happen:

Now, after his impressive performance, we’re about to close the books on the best fundraising day of his entire campaign!

Team Bennet

Great news — Tim’s been crushing the fundraising game since his appearance at the debate, and we couldn’t be more thrilled about it. After many sleepless nights of debate prep (and lots of coffee), trust me when I say Tim’s success is well-deserved.

Mike Morley, Tim Ryan for America

Since Andrew took to that stage in Detroit and presented his bold vision for the future of America – and talked about how this circus of a primary isn’t serving the American people – we’ve raised over a quarter of a million dollars. We’ve also had tens of thousands of people head to our website and see exactly what the Freedom Dividend would mean for their community.

Zach Graumann, Campaign Manager, Yang2020

After last night’s debate, we’re seeing an outpouring of support for our campaign.We received donations from all 50 states while I was on stage, with an average gift of just $17 (proving this is truly a grassroots campaign!). And 75% of those donors are NEW.

This is shaping up to be the single best 24-hour fundraising period so far this quarter!

Kirsten Gillibrand

Amy’s message is resonating across the country, and the excitement is building. Just look at all the donations that came in from all 50 states during the debate!

Klobuchar HQ
Klobuchar’s donations

Last night, we saw the highest traffic surge to our campaign website ever. Our team tells me the 10 p.m. ET hour last night was the biggest single fundraising hour of the campaign… until the 11 p.m. ET hour which quickly set a new bar.

And none of this came from corporate PACs or federal lobbyists. It came from grassroots donors like you. The average contribution is $20.62, and we had people chipping in for the first time in every state (plus D.C.) between the start of the debate and midnight.

Cory Booker

We had our biggest fundraising day EVER after the debate — this is real momentum, and we can’t slow down.

Team Inslee

I’m pleased that the candidates are all so pleased, but I do wish they’d dial down the excitement. We all knew they would get a spike after a national appearance on a major news network. It would have been more concerning if they didn’t.

And one person who isn’t boasting a huge fundraising haul is Julian Castro.

Castro is 1 poll away from qualifying for the September debates. He has all the donors he needs already, as well as 3 other qualifying polls. He has a month to get his last poll. The path he decided to take was one of fear:

NPR: Last night’s debate could be Castro’s last

Quickly — there are 3 critical things you need to know:

 1. NPR just warned last night could’ve been Julián’s last time in the debates.

 2. But Julián is now only ONE poll away from qualifying for the next round.

 3. If just 6,489 more Democrats rush $15 before midnight tomorrow, we’ll make sure Julián can fund his effective ads, spread his powerful message, and secure his spot on that next debate stage! >>

Last night Julián showed guts.

He proved that even someone from an immigrant family, who was raised by a single mom in a poor neighborhood, can beat Donald Trump.

We cannot let it be the last time America hears from Julián on the national stage.

Will you rush $15 before midnight tomorrow?

Team Julian

This was one of at least 4 emails since July 30 trumpeting NPR’s warning that this could be Julian’s last debate. Castro has always leaned heavily on the “everyone counts me out, but I’m still in!” underdog rhetoric, but this message is growing incredibly tiring. Castro is doing amazingly well. The first debate stirred up interest in him, the second debate showed another solid performance, and he has a month to score 2% in just one more poll. I am not worried about Castro qualifying for September at all.

I am worried about Castro being a one-note candidate. Two notes. He can talk about his family and he can talk about immigration and he has not managed to talk about anything else to stir me up and make me go “Yeah, Castro, I want you in the White House!” The more Castro talks about how hard his childhood was, the more I want to roll my eyes at him. We all have that friend who tries to continuously wring pity out of a story, right? That is entirely what Castro reminds me of. Especially when coupled with his erratic email schedule. If he needs something (130,000 donors, one more poll), he spams me with two, three, four emails a day. Once he’s gotten what he wants, he falls silent for a bit. Until he remembers he wants something else.

When you’re trying to get someone invested in you, you need to build a relationship. A relationship based solely on “I’ll talk to you when you’re useful and sling my sob story to get your empathy” isn’t a very strong or compelling relationship. It’s certainly not the attitude I want to see in my leaders.

Kirsten Gillibrand has broken into the 100 club!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s