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Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds a rally in advance of the New Hampshire presidential primary election in Rochester, New Hampshire, U.S., January 21, 2024. 

Mike Segar | Reuters

Former President Donald Trump outraised President Joe Biden last month for the first time in 2024, a potential sign that Trump’s trial in New York could be giving his campaign a boost in fundraising.

Biden’s political operation announced on Tuesday in a press release that the combined campaign, joint fundraising committees and the Democratic National Committee raised $51 million in April. Trump and the Republican National Committee recently announced they raised $76 million last month.

The exact figures will be impossible to verify until July, when the joint fundraising committees for both Biden and Trump file their quarterly financial records with the Federal Election Commission.

The Republican National Committee, meanwhile, had their best month of year so far in April, as they brought in about $32 million. The Democratic National Committee slightly outraised them, however, with around $35 million booked last month.

Excluding any money from the RNC or any PACs, Trump’s campaign committee reported raising $9.4 million in April. Biden’s campaign committee raised $24.2 million in the same time period, according to new FEC filings released late Monday night.

The success by Trump and the RNC came the same month that the former president took part in a massive fundraiser at Wall Street veteran John Paulson’s home in Florida to benefit one of his joint fundraising committees, called Trump 47.

The event raised over $50 million shared between the Trump campaign, the RNC, his political action committee Save America and over a dozen state parties, according to the Trump campaign and the RNC.

Still, Trump’s apparent outpacing of Biden suggests the former president’s move to try to raise money from his trial in New York could be paying off. Trump’s first day in court was April 15.

Despite his legal hurdles, a growing number of wealthy donors who backed Trump’s two previous runs for the White House have recently come back into his corner.

Trump’s campaign has been fundraising during the trial with email blasts and receiving what amounts to hours of free media, as cable news channels cut in an out of live interviews with reporters outside the courthouse in Manhattan.

Since April 19, Trump’s team has spent over $300,000 on Facebook ads, with many of the spots focusing on his trial and raising money for his reelection campaign.

The filings also underscored the differences between how the two campaigns are being staffed and operated.

U.S. President Joe Biden attends a campaign event at the Martin Luther King Recreation Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., April 18, 2024. 

Elizabeth Frantz | Reuters

Biden’s reelection campaign reported spending approximately $3 million on payroll in April, with more than 250 employees on the books, according to a Politico analysis of the raw data from thousands of line items.

Trump’s campaign, meanwhile, spent just $550,000 on payroll in April and paid around 65 employees.

Biden has already built out networks of local campaign offices across major battleground states, while Trump maintains a very light footprint in most of them.

Still, it’s not clear how much of a difference having staffers on the ground really makes in modern presidential elections, where voters see candidates all over social media and national cable news.

During Trump’s successful 2016 presidential campaign, for example, pundits on both sides of the aisle predicted that his refusal to invest in large networks of paid staffers across the country would doom his White House bid.

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