Sanders hits 1 million donors

Sanders hits 1 million donors
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersNYT editorial board endorses Warren, Klobuchar for Democratic nomination for president Trump rails against impeachment in speech to Texas farmers Biden breaks away from 2020 pack in South Carolina MORE (I-Vt.) announced Thursday that his campaign has garnered more than 1 million individual donors, making him the first candidate to claim to have hit the milestone.

“With 1 million contributors, this is the only Democratic campaign that has more supporters than Donald Trump,” Sanders campaign manager Faiz Shakir said in a statement.

“Our strength is in numbers, and that is why Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who is able to say his campaign will rely only on grassroots funding in both the primary and against Donald Trump. Like all campaigns we are beholden to our donors, and we’re proud to stand with one million working people."

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The campaign declared Sanders the fastest candidate in history to reach the milestone and said 99.5 percent of its donors are eligible to donate again since they have yet to reach the maximum donation amount.

Starbucks, Walmart and Amazon are the most common employers of individuals who have donated to the senator's White House bid, while teachers remain the top occupation, his campaign said.

The 2.5 million overall donations have come in from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, while more than 125,000 donors make monthly recurring contributions, according to figures released by his staff.

Sanders is seeking to shore up support for his campaign following weeks of rising polling figures for Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenNYT editorial board endorses Warren, Klobuchar for Democratic nomination for president Trump rails against impeachment in speech to Texas farmers Biden breaks away from 2020 pack in South Carolina MORE (D-Mass.), the other top progressive in the Democratic primary who has overtaken him in the Real Clear Politics polling index.

Both candidates still trail former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenNYT editorial board endorses Warren, Klobuchar for Democratic nomination for president Trump rails against impeachment in speech to Texas farmers Biden breaks away from 2020 pack in South Carolina MORE in most national and statewide polls, though Biden's lead in several polls has become narrower.

Seeking to dismiss concerns over Sanders’s electability, his campaign noted Thursday that it has attracted 81,000 donations from counties that flipped from former President Obama in 2012 to President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump rails against impeachment in speech to Texas farmers Trump administration planning to crack down on 'birth tourism': report George Conway on Trump adding Dershowitz, Starr to legal team: 'Hard to see how either could help' MORE in 2016.

Sanders has cultivated a loyal grassroots following since his 2016 insurgent presidential bid against Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNYT editorial board endorses Warren, Klobuchar for Democratic nomination for president Sanders v. Warren is just for insiders Alan Dershowitz: Argument president cannot be impeached for abusing power a 'strong one' MORE, the eventual Democratic nominee that year, helping ensure he will have the runway to compete far into the party's 2020 nominating contest.