Will April bring shower of announcements?

Get ready for April to bring a shower of presidential campaign announcements.

Former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonThe Democratic demolition derby Juan Williams: Don't count Biden out Candidates in Obama's orbit fail to capitalize on personal ties MORE (D) is moving hard towards a launch early next month, according to sources close to her team. 


Republican Sens. Marco Rubio (Fla.), Ted Cruz (Texas) and Rand Paul (Ky.) are also likely to hit the launch button in the coming weeks, according to sources familiar with their plans, pushing the 2016 race into high gear in what could be a crucial month of the campaign season.

And, like most things in politics, the rush to launch is being driven mostly by finances.

April 1 marks the beginning of a new fundraising quarter, giving candidates plenty of time to build their campaign war chests before they have to report the figures publicly in July. 

“It makes sense to start as early as possible to have a strong quarter. The financial challenge is so immense that you need all the time you can get,” said Texas-based GOP strategist Matt Mackowiak. 

“It seems like it's early, but as you start planning your calendar out for the rest of the year, you realize we're a ways down the road here and you've got to do the things you have to do now,” he added. 

Several candidates appear ready to take advantage an early announcement, giving them the full second quarter to pad their campaign coffers. 

The exact timing of Clinton’s decision remains an open question, though it appears increasingly likely that she’ll move in early April.

Cruz is also expected to announce sometime early in the month, while Paul has been eying April 7 as a possible launch date for some time. 

Cruz and Paul aides declined to comment to The Hill on exact timing of the campaign.

Rubio is also expected to announce as soon as April, according to sources close to the senator. 

The candidates’ moves towards official campaigns, whether they claim they’re “exploratory committees” or outright declare White House runs, gives them their best chance to set their narratives and garner big media attention, making their rollouts crucial. 

With so many candidates likely to announce in a tight time window, how they scrap and claw for media attention will be key.

“All these guys want to be able to post up against Hillary,” said Florida-based GOP strategist Rick Wilson, who has ties to Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R). 

“If you're Ted Cruz your mailing list is your main fundraising mechanism, and if you're going to run a campaign off of that you have to go in saying 'I'm your guy to take on Clinton.' And it's very difficult to do that without a big target like Hillary and without themselves being in the game,” Wilson noted. 

Jumping in during a busy month has its risks, however.

“If Hillary does take the formal step of announcing in April, she's going to chew up a couple of days or a week of news,” said Mackowiak. “The candidates want to have the days to themselves, so working around others' schedules makes a lot of sense and that may require some adaptability on the Republicans' side.”

Launching early has drawbacks, however. Candidates have to face up to the media more often once they’re in and have no excuse to duck issues or events. 

They also can’t coordinate any longer with friendly super-PACs, a big reason why both Bush and Walker, who already have national fundraising networks and high name recognition, are likely to wait until the summer to officially announce.

The former Florida governor’s delay also allows him to continue to work closely with his Right to Rise super-PAC to haul in big checks before he officially joins the race.

As the campaigns ramp up, there’s also been a rush to snap up staff on both sides of the aisle.

Clinton has been especially busy in recent weeks, moving to pad out her national press team and early-primary state operations with a bevy of new hires.

Jesse Ferguson, who until recently was a top strategist for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, is slated to have a senior communications role in the national office, with a number of other names from the DCCC and Democratic National Committee are expected to join him in the coming weeks. 

Clinton has also hired half a dozen top Democratic operatives to run her efforts in early-voting Iowa and New Hampshire including top Matt Paul, a longtime advisor to former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D), and Mike Vlacich, who ran Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s (D-N.H.) 2014 campaign.

Cruz, Rubio and Paul have all also brought on new advisors in recent weeks or shifted top strategists from their official Senate offices to the campaign side.

All those last minute moves are to ensure that their campaign apparatus will be all systems go once they officially pull the lever. 

“This is like a duck: placid on the surface, busy underneath," said Wilson. "You're going to keep seeing those staff moves."