President Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden are running neck and neck in Maine when it comes to drumming up campaign contributions from Maine residents.

As of May 31, Trump had received $431,111 in itemized donations from donors in Maine compared to $403,646 contributed to Biden, according to campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

But the Democratic contender and former vice president has been steadily closing the fundraising gap in Maine. Since the end of January, Biden reported more than $333,000 in itemized donations versus about $156,000 contributed to Trump during that period.

The FEC filings include “itemized” donations of $200 or more, or smaller amounts from individuals whose total donations for the election exceed the $200 reporting threshold. Campaigns are also aggressively soliciting small-dollar donations but are not required to publicly disclose the identity or residency of such contributors.

Compared to other states, Maine is small potatoes when it comes to presidential fundraising. The $834,757 donated to the Trump and Biden campaigns represents just 0.2 percent of the nearly $500 million raised by the two candidates from individuals, political action committees and other sources through May 31.

It is also a small figure compared to how much has flowed into the campaign coffers of Republican Sen. Susan Collins and her Democratic challenger, House Speaker Sara Gideon. With Maine’s Senate race already on nearly every “watch list” for major congressional contests this fall, the two candidates had received more than $41 million in donations in all as of June 30.


The vast majority of that money has come from outside Maine, a discrepancy that reflects the limited political cash pool in the small state but also the national interest in a race that could help decide which party controls the Senate.

Data from the FEC shows Maine residents donated just over $900,000 of the $16.9 million contributed to the Collins campaign through June 24. Mainers accounted for nearly $1.3 million of Gideon’s $24.2 million in total donations.

The Trump campaign has been active in Maine for several years, hoping to at least repeat its performance in 2016 when the candidate picked up one of Maine’s four electors by winning the majority of voters in the 2nd Congressional District. Maine is one of only two states that allows its pool of Electoral College votes to be divided.

Earlier this week, the Trump campaign said it had made nearly 600,000 “voter contacts” in the state to date, including more than 50,000 phone calls and 16,000-plus knocks on doors last week. Trump lawn signs are also increasingly common, particularly in areas of rural Maine, and former Gov. Paul LePage is the president’s honorary state campaign chairman.

The Biden campaign, meanwhile, had a negligible campaign presence in Maine leading up to the state’s presidential primary, held on March 3 as part of Super Tuesday. Biden edged Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders – 35 percent to 34 percent – in Maine as Democrats across the country quickly coalesced behind the former vice president.

It wasn’t until Monday that the Biden campaign announced its state leadership team. James Stretch, a campaign veteran in state and federal races, will serve as the Biden campaign’s state director while Portland City Councilor Spencer Thibodeau will serve as senior adviser.

But the limited amount of polling conducted in Maine to date suggest that Biden has a sizable advantage over Trump. The most recent survey, released earlier this month by the left-leaning Public Policy Polling showed Biden over Trump 53 percent to 42 percent. Roughly 55 percent of 1,000-plus respondents disapproved of the president’s job performance.

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