Sen. Cory Booker’s (D-NJ) 2020 presidential campaign manager warned staffers in a memo that he may not be in the race much longer if the campaign does not raise $1.7 million in ten days.
Campaign manager Addisu Demissie issued the warning after pulling in a weaker-than-expected fundraising haul in early September, stating that to stay in the race, the campaign needs the $1.7 million before September 30, the end of the financial quarter.
“Without a fundraising surge to close out this quarter, we do not see a legitimate long-term path forward,” Demissie wrote in the Saturday memo to staff and supporters that NBC News obtained. “The next 10 days will determine whether Cory Booker can stay in this race.”
Booker has struggled to gain a foothold nationally in the polls, coming in at just under three percent, according to the RealClearPolitics polling average.
Booker’s struggle to gain traction financially also comes at a time when New York Mayor Bill de Blasio dropped out of the presidential race.
But despite the problems in polling and fundraising, some Booker staffers told Fox News that the memo was leaked to the media to gain more fundraising in the next few days.
A tweet from Booker’s official campaign account on Saturday spun the lackluster fundraising numbers not as an “end of quarter stunt,” but as a “transparent” look into how campaigns work:
We’re at a crossroads in this campaign. We need to raise $1.7 million by September 30 to be in a position to build the organization we need to compete for the nomination—and we can do it—but if we don’t, we don’t see a legitimate long-term path forward.
— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) September 21, 2019