Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and associated committees raised more than $18m in the most recent fundraising period and have already brought in $100m plus in total, even though the 2020 presidential election is still two years away.

The haul gives Trump a significant head start in his re-election bid. Unconventionally, he even formally filed for re-election on his inauguration day in 2017. The campaign and the committees, which are joint fundraising ventures with the Republican National Committee (RNC), had a total of $35.4m on hand at the end of the period.

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The fundraising total, buttressed by a significant number of fundraising events helmed by Trump as well as small-dollar donations and proceeds from sales of merchandise like Make America Great Again hats, represents a sea change from Trump’s 2016 campaign. Trump eschewed a traditional approach to campaigning throughout much of the Republican primary. In contrast, his second presidential campaign is partnering with the RNC to build a stronger and more conventional political infrastructure in advance of the 2020 cycle.

There is also a robust eco-system of outside groups already supporting Trump’s re-election bid. Outside groups and political action committees have spent over $9m to promote Trump’s 2020 campaign.

‘He’ll be re-elected’: Trump and allies tout the sweet smell of 2020 success
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Trump has long looked ahead to his re-election bid and publicly mused in rallies about how easily he would beat potential Democratic opponents like Cory Booker or Elizabeth Warren, whom he repeatedly attacked on Twitter again on Tuesday. In contrast to Trump, any Democratic nominee would have to scramble to create a comparable infrastructure after a long and likely bruising primary battle.

However, Trump’s presidential campaign did not have the greatest fundraising total of the past quarter. His campaign’s haul was bested by Beto O’Rourke, the Democratic candidate for Senate in Texas, who raised an unprecedented $38m.

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