LAS VEGAS -- Marco Rubio raised about $6 million for his presidential effort by the end of Sept. 30, according to figures campaign officials shared Thursday with top political donors.
The Florida Republican senator has collected about $18 million since launching his campaign in April, according to a source attending the two-day donor gathering at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. The bulk of that -- more than $12 million -- came in by the end of June. About $3 million had been transferred from his Senate reelection campaign.
That's less than most other presidential candidates who have already divulged their quarterly fundraising totals. Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson raked in more than $20 million. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is expected to surpass the $11.4 million he raised by the end of June, The Wall Street Journal reported, and Bush expects to be outraised by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul said he raised $2.5 million -- a number a presidential campaign could burn through quickly. (Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders said they amassed $28 million and $26 million, respectively.)
Rubio and his aides have boasted that they're frugal. They told donors Thursday that about $11 million of the $18 million raised since April remains in the bank.
How much each candidate has spent won’t be available until campaigns file detailed reports to the Federal Election Commission until next week.
The Rubio source said July was "a very tough month," as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and other contenders entered the race (Walker has since dropped out). August is usually slow because many contributors are on vacation, the officials stressed to donors.
But the campaign "finished the quarter strong," bringing in more than $1 million online alone in September, according to the source.
Rubio donors have told the Miami Herald in recent weeks that his strong showing in a pair of televised primary debates made it easier to persuade their acquaintances to donate to the candidate. Rubio's poll numbers have edged up since the Sept. 16 debate, and he has stepped up his TV interviews and campaign events.
In all, the Rubio campaign has received cash from nearly 100,000 donors, the officials told the top contributors, suggesting a growing grassroots interest in his campaign.
Photo credit: Jim Cole, Associated Press