DNC urges donors to catch up to Trump ‘while we still can’

May 16, 2019 GMT

The Democratic National Committee sounded the alarm Thursday about the chances of defeating President Trump, whose approval ratings have been climbing steadily this year while his reelection campaign blows away the Democratic field in fundraising for 2020.

In a fundraising email, DNC Chairman Tom Perez warned supporters that Democrats need to keep Mr. Trump’s poll numbers as low as possible “if we’re going to have any shot at winning the presidency next year.”

He pointed out that three national polls had Mr. Trump’s approval ratings ranging from 43% to 45% last week.

“This race will be closer than many are anticipating, and we can’t take anything for granted,” said Mr. Perez, who outlined efforts to counter the president’s reelection campaign, including training a new generation of “community organizers” and upgrading the DNC’s tech and data operations.


Since the president’s State of the Union address in early February, he received a bump in his job-approval ratings that has remained fairly steady, rising from 41% on Feb. 6 to 45% this week in the Real Clear Politics average of polls. His approval ratings haven’t been this high since the early days of his presidency, in March 2017, according to RCP.

The president’s campaign war chest has “outraised every Democratic presidential hopeful by a long shot,” Mr. Perez said.

Mr. Trump’s re-election campaign raised more than $30 million in the first quarter of 2019, surpassing the combined totals of the top two Democrats before former Vice President Joe Biden entered the race.

And the RNC said Thursday it broke another record by raising $15.9 million in April, with $34.7 million on hand and no debt.

Citing those developments, Mr. Perez said the DNC “is working tirelessly to make the early, strategic investments it will take to cut Trump and the RNC’s lead.”

“It’s why we need your help to close the gap now, while we still can,” he told supporters.

Among the DNC’s efforts are a “war room” made up of dozens of research, communications, and mobilization experts to call attention to “the stories of the real people most devastated by Trump’s disgraceful policies,” he said.

An “Organizing Corps” will train volunteer “community organizers” in cities such as Atlanta, Charlotte, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Milwaukee, Orlando, Phoenix, Philadelphia, and Tampa to help the eventual Democratic nominee.

And Mr. Perez said the DNC has spent heavily in cybersecurity, after infamous hacking resulted in stolen DNC emails during the 2016 campaign.