Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke bested all of his Democratic rivals with a $6.1 million fundraising haul in his first 24 hours after announcing his 2020 presidential bid, NBC News reports.
O’Rourke raised more money than even Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on the first official day of his campaign and routed all of his other opponents.
By comparison, Sanders raised $5.9 million in his first 24 hours as a candidate, California Sen. Kamala Harris raised $1.5 million on her first day, and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee raised $1 million apiece in the first several days of their campaigns.
"In just 24 hours, Americans across this country came together to prove that it is possible to run a true grassroots campaign for president — a campaign by all of us, for all of us, that answers not to the PACs, corporations, and special interests but to the people," O’Rourke said in a statement.
The congressman, who lost by a slight margin to Ted Cruz in deep-red Texas in a Senate race last year, has vowed not to accept donations from PACs of any kind.
Beto’s fundraising numbers in context:
Beto’s fundraising prowess cannot be overstated enough. As a Senate candidate, he raised a record $79 million, including $38 million in just one quarter.
His $6.1 million haul is nearly as large as the $6.6 President Trump raised in all of 2015 after announcing his presidential in the middle of the year.
It is also more than Harris’, Klobuchar’s, Inslee’s, Hickenlooper’s, and Elizabeth Warren’s first day hauls combined.
“If he can keep raising funds like this, it will be difficult to treat him like anything other than a real, top contender for the Democratic nomination,” wrote The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake.