Newly released campaign finance reports show the campaign of presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump raised only a small sum of money throughout May.
The business mogul’s campaign funds are meager and are currently dwarfed by presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s financial resources by a staggering degree.
The records show the Trump campaign raised $3.1 million throughout May and entered June with only $1.3 million on hand. Meanwhile, the Clinton campaign raised $28 million during the same month and entered June with $42 million in the bank, USA Today reports.
That Trump raised less and was able to save less of that money than his presumed general election opponent is only made more shocking given that only 69 people are on his campaign payroll while the Clinton campaign employs 685.
Throughout the 2016 presidential election cycle, Trump has raised a total of $64.6 million. A large portion of that financing, $45.7 million, Trump himself loaned to his campaign, meaning his campaign has raised $18.9 million in contributions since he announced his candidacy.
By June 2012, former GOP nominee Mitt Romney had raised $120.6 million for his campaign, almost double what Trump has raised so far.
The campaign finance reports show the Trump campaign spent $6.7 million throughout May, $1 million of those expenditures to reimburse Trump's own companies. This includes checks to Trump’s airline for travel expenses and his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida, The Washington Post reports.
Clinton’s financial lead over Trump has allowed her campaign spend $117 million in television air time to blanket the airwaves of swing states with negative advertising against Trump until the November election, CNN reports.
The Trump campaign has not spent anything on television advertisements, and has given no indications of doing so. Instead, Trump has signaled he hopes to benefit from the free media coverage that had helped him beat out 17 other competitors in the Republican primary.
The presumed GOP nominee has signed a joint fundraising agreement with the Republican National Committee and has started making the fundraising rounds, appearing at donor events in Texas and Arizona.
The Trump campaign issued an official statement on June 21, seemingly trying to quell GOP anxiety over the nominee’s fundraising figures, Policy Mic reports.
“If need be, there could be unlimited ‘cash on hand’ as I would put up my own money, as I have already done through the primaries, spending over $50 million,” Trump said in the statement. “Our campaign is leaner and more efficient, like our government should be.”
Trump’s confidence that his campaign is raising enough has not swayed observers who find the finance reports alarming.
“This is unprecedented,” said David Birdsell, the dean of the Baruch College School of Public Affairs. “Never in modern campaigning has a presumptive nominee been so bereft of resources -- money, staff, strategy -- as Donald Trump at this point in the cycle.”
Political strategist and pundit Susan Del Percio noted that Trump could “infuse his campaign quickly with his own money, and that is what potential donors are probably waiting to see him do.”
Del Percio added that the businessman still faces an uphill climb to raising enough money to be competitive against Clinton in the general election campaign, citing that there is no time left for him to form a fundraising operation.
“Second, donors want to know his strategy to win -- and to date, Trump has yet to provide one,” Del Percio concluded.