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With fundraising results, third Democratic debate is in reach for Klobuchar

With 100,000 unique donors so far, Klobuchar needs just 30,000 more (and one poll result) to participate in the debate in December.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar
Sen. Amy Klobuchar's campaign says she raised $3.87 million from over 100,000 unique donors this year.
REUTERS/Kamil Krzaczynski

An email to supporters last month said that Amy Klobuchar was in the Minneapolis campaign headquarters calling supporters past midnight. Volunteers in the St. Paul farmer’s market asked for single dollar donations (“Four quarter donation gets Amy debatin’!”). And Klobuchar made a video appeal to voters over Facebook: “This is a real test for our campaign,” Klobuchar said. “Help us show that we have the momentum to make it.”

Those late night calls, quarters gathered, and online pleas seem to have paid off.

On Monday, the filing deadline, Klobuchar released her second quarter fundraising numbers. Her campaign says she raised $3.87 million from over 100,000 unique donors this year. To participate in the third Democratic debate in September, candidates need contributions from 130,000 unique donors and to have polled at 2% or more in four qualifying polls between June 28 and August 28.

But while Klobuchar’s fundraising numbers put her in reach of qualifying for the third debate, they are well below what leading candidates have raised: Joe Biden raised $21.5 million; Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont raised $18 million from over 1 million individual donors; Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts raised $19 million, with 384,000 individual donors; and Sen. Kamala Harris of California raised $11.8 million, with around 279,000 donors.

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Klobuchar’s donations put her in league with Sen. Cory Booker, who raised $4.55 million and Beto O’Rourke who raised $3.65 million.

Nearly six months into her campaign, Klobuchar often cites her lack of a “political machine,” as a reason to support her and differentiate her from the rest of the field. But South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who also lacked such infrastructure initially, raised $24.8 million from 294,000 donors this quarter.

Klobuchar has earned 2 percent support in three qualifying polls so far: an ABC News/Washington Post national poll on July 3, USA Today/Suffolk University Iowa poll on July 2, and a CNN national poll on July 1. She only needs one more result of 2 percent or more in a qualifying poll to participate in the third debate.

Her polling continues to hold steady at between 0 and 3 percent: A July 11th national poll from NBC and the Wall Street Journal places Klobuchar at 1 percent and a Fox News poll in South Carolina at 0 percent.