Bernie Sanders has surpassed his goal to raise $40m in the month of February, a new milestone for the Vermont senator’s grass roots campaign.
With just hours to go before the end of the day on Monday, Mr Sanders’s campaign had pulled in $40.2m, a staggering achievement for a candidate who has relied almost entirely on small campaign donations.
His campaign staff said they were now hoping to reach a new goal of $40.5m by midnight.
The figures are further proof of the success Mr Sanders has achieved in attracting millions of campaign donations from ordinary individuals, a feat that has made him a fierce opponent at times to Hillary Clinton, his better-established Democratic rival.
Mr Sanders first broke records when he raised more than $20m in the month of January, collecting money from more than 3m donors. In the 48 hours following his 20 percentage point victory over Mrs Clinton in New Hampshire, Mr Sanders raised $8m in 48 hours.
While Mrs Clinton is riding momentum on the back of two successive primary wins, Mr Sanders and his supporters are still hoping the Vermont senator can win several states in the Super Tuesday vote.
Of the 11 states that vote on March 1, five are considered to be fertile ground for Mr Sanders: Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oklahoma and his home state of Vermont.
After Mrs Clinton’s successive wins in Nevada and South Carolina, Mr Sanders is now facing an increasingly difficult path to the nomination, with Mrs Clinton leading Mr Sanders in the delegate count by 544 to 85, largely due to her support from superdelegates, comprised of members of the Democratic party elite.
To beat Mrs Clinton and secure the nomination, Mr Sanders would need to win most of the 11 states that vote on Tuesday by large, double-digit margins.
In a final fundraising push before Super Tuesday, Mr Sanders reminded supporters that the race was still far from over with “96 per cent of [the non-superdelegate] delegates . . . still up for grabs”.
“Eleven states vote tomorrow [Tuesday], and 12 more vote over the next two weeks,” Mr Sanders wrote in a letter to supporters. “It is the most important stretch of our campaign.”
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