Days 285 and 286: 2/29/20-3/1/20

We lost 2 candidates over the weekend, though Tom Steyer was considerate enough to end on a Saturday so he doesn’t get looped into another weekly recap. The focus of the emails was definitely on fundraising, with a sprinkling of South Carolina and Super Tuesday on top. Pete Buttigieg had the most varied asks for money, while Bernie Sanders was the only candidate who asked for my vote directly.


For all new readers: Welcome! I am currently on the mailing lists of 1 candidate for the Democratic Presidential Nomination, but I’ve been on 28 mailing lists! This blog breaks down recent emails with charts and excerpts. If you already know all of this, feel free to skip to the next chart!

I signed up to all mailing lists either on May 21 or the day the candidate announced, whichever was later. Using a different email address, I have donated at least $1 to all candidates who have been on a debate stage (I have given additional donations to my preferred candidates through my personal email, but the campaigns have linked the two accounts together and may ask for more as a result).

When showing breakdowns by campaigns, there will usually be 2 numbers. Emails to my non-donor account will be indicated by a darker color/top bar in horizontal bar charts. Emails to my donor account will be indicated by a lighter color/bottom bar.

Unless otherwise specified, all other charts combine the donor and non-donor numbers, as they are roughly 1-for-1, so the percentages and relative differences don’t change much. You can divide the numbers in half to get the rough estimate for what someone not signed up twice would be receiving. The rules I try to follow for the various categories are laid out in The Framework.

If you want specific data on any particular day, feel free to drop a comment!

If this chart doesn’t shrink horizontally, so help me…

Pete Buttigieg topped the weekend with 17 emails to his donors in 2 days, followed distantly by Joe Biden at 11 emails and Elizabeth Warren with 9. The weekend had two dropouts, first Tom Steyer on Saturday, but then Pete Buttigieg on Sunday. My inbox may finally end up under control…

FEC deadline vs not

With Saturday being the end of a month, emails were much higher, with a grand total of 66 emails on Saturday. Saturday also had the South Carolina primary, which was won by Joe Biden in a landslide.

South Carolina and FEC

There wasn’t much else being talked about in the emails, other than Super Tuesday. All of the candidates were eager for money, to prove that they were still in the race.

Pete Buttigieg promoted several contests over the weekend. First was his chance to win a trip to New York to meet Buttigieg and celebrity endorser Michael J. Fox. Fox wrote an email talking about how the best part of a movie is the cast and the storyline, and the supporters of Buttigieg were the cast for this show, and he was going to be the one star struck to meet a member of the team.

Buttigieg also had a leaderboard contest running, where the first person to donate a specific amount would get called out on a leaderboard. It was a fun little game, though the low level donations filled up fast.

He followed up with an email-writing contest, where one lucky winner would get a chance to write, sign, and send an email for Team Pete. I will confess: this one got a dollar out of me.

Other donation games from Buttigieg over the weekend included a “light up the country,” where he had a map of the United States, and the more donations rolled in from a state, the brighter yellow it grew, and a “Rules of the Road” awards, where you could donate to honor people who exemplified one of the ten values that the Buttigieg campaign embodied.

Via Twitter, he also promoted a Twitch gaming session where eight of his staffers would be competing in Mario Kart, and the staffer with the most money pulled in through their link would get first pick of characters.

Compared to Buttigieg’s action-packed fundraising weekend, everyone else was rather boring. Joe Biden touted his South Carolina win and asked for more money. Amy Klobuchar pointed out Super Tuesday was just around the corner and asked for more money. Bernie Sanders boasted that he raised the most money in February and asked for more money. Elizabeth Warren cheered that she hit her $29 million goal in February and asked for more money. And Tulsi Gabbard lambasted the corrupt cable news network that was giving all of the other candidates except her more free air time and that was clearly the machinations of the political elite trying to silence her campaign, so she asked for more money.

Mike Bloomberg didn’t ask for more money, but he let me know various places where I could volunteer to support him now that he was actually going to be able to be on the ballot and competing in elections.

Attend was all Buttigieg

Pete Buttigieg was the only candidate who asked me to attend events just to attend events, not to volunteer or donate, while he and Tom Steyer were the three Info asks, just wanting to let me know that they were dropping out. Buttigieg joined Mike Bloomberg and Elizabeth Warren in asking for volunteer assistance over the weekend.

One of Warren’s emails, late on Sunday, asked me to help her text supporters. Here’s how she asked me as a non-donor:

This arrived at 9:21 PM EST, a bit late for texting

And here’s her donor version:

Apparently, only donors deserve dog pictures.

It just goes to show that some candidates do say different things based on whether you already gave them money or not.

Finally, Bernie Sanders and Mike Bloomberg sent petitions around, but while Sanders wanted me to commit to vote for him, Bloomberg wanted me to say that the American people deserved better than Trump in how the coronavirus is handled.

I do fully agree with the second petition. I’d rather have someone who’s handled a disease outbreak at any level managing the crisis rather than someone who got the job just because Trump needed a fall guy.

This election has never felt more serious.

One by one, the colors fade away.

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