Ben Carson Is Still Raising Money Somehow

His campaign may have sunk in the polls, but Carson keeps pulling in the cash.

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

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Ben Carson’s campaign raised $3.3 million in January. This is a fantastic sum for a candidate who has crashed in the polls, but a dismal letdown from the eye-popping fundraising numbers the retired neurosurgeon once registered. For instance, Carson raised $22.6 million in the final three months of 2015.

A source familiar with the campaign’s finances tells Mother Jones that though the numbers are not too bad, the campaign has been spending money faster than it has been coming in. On February 4, the campaign was $700,000 in debt after barely making payroll. The source said that 60 percent of the campaign’s staff has been let go, and more layoffs are imminent.

An upside for the Carson campaign is that donors apparently took sympathy on him after he was hit by Ted Cruz campaign’s dirty tricks in Iowa—most notably, the circulation of false rumors that Carson had dropped out of the race on February 1, the night of the Iowa caucuses. So far in February, the campaign has raised another $2.2 million.

“They’re giddy,” the source told Mother Jones, referring to Carson’s team. But, he added, most of the campaign staff is quite aware that the campaign is broke and confused as to how Carson will continue his presidential bid past the South Carolina primary. He says several of the campaign’s field staffers have already secured jobs with other campaigns and are just waiting for the final word.

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Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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