Political pundits, polls and money

I’ve been listening to pundits talk about the Democratic presidential campaign. I suppose because there are no firm numbers from actual voters, the pundits are concentrating on how much money the candidates have raised.

And the way they talk about the money suggests that the most money means the most…well, what? Votes? Poll numbers?

I’m a little surprised, and fairly annoyed. Because the money race does not seem to have moved the polls much at all. Everybody’s been making a big deal about Andrew Yang, for instance, and how much money he’s raised. He’s polling at 3.5% and it hasn’t moved very much.

And what about Tom Steyer and Mike Bloomberg, with their unlimited pocketbooks? Steyer’s been in the race longer than Bloomberg and has been all over TV, but he’s at 1.8%, while Bloomberg is at 4.8%.

Gosh ‘n’ golly! Is is possible money won’t buy this nomination?

Here’s what I’ve dug out — thanks to the New York Times (quarterly money numbers) and 538.com (national poll numbers as of today) — for the three major candidates and one I consider to be minor:

Joe Biden: $22.7 million. Poll number: 27.8%

Bernie Sanders: $34.5 million. His poll number: 18.7%.

Elizabeth Warren hasn’t yet publicized her current quarter number. Her poll number: 14.9%

Pete Buttigieg: $24.7 million. Poll number 7.5%

So what about their opponent, running basically without competition in his own party? Trump raised $46 million this past quarter. His poll number? 42.4%. Wowser, right? Big number.

Yeah, but I added up the monies collected in toto by the three Democratic candidates for whom we have these quarter numbers. The total? $81.9 million and when Warren reports, this total will probably go to $98 million. Reminder: Trump collected $46 million.

If money does mean something, the Democratic candidates are doubling Trump’s numbers.

Since one dollar does not mean one vote, I added up the poll numbers. The four top Democratic candidates total 68% of Democratic voters — 25.6% higher than Trump’s approval number.

 

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