The Washington Post has an illuminating report on the amount of money presidential candidates have spent in February and March 2016 per vote.
There is an excellent graphic a quarter of the way down the page which shows the breakdown. This is before outside money, e.g. PAC funding, is factored in.
Strangely, Jeb Bush was omitted from the list, although his failed campaign cost $130m.
On the Republican side, overall, Ben Carson spent well beyond what the other remaining GOP candidates did. His campaign’s profligate spending made the news earlier this year. Unfortunately, in an attempt to speculate to accumulate, most of that money went on fundraising to generate more contributions: $85.64 per vote! That is more than four times’ Bernie Sanders’s equivalent spend of $21.27.
Carson aside, the Republicans have spent much less per vote than the Democrats. In February, Hillary Clinton spent $77.25 and Bernie Sanders an eye-watering $126.42. In March, Clinton spent $3.73 and Sanders $7.29.
Contrast those figures with Rafael ‘Ted’ Cruz’s spend of $65.64 in February and Donald Trump’s $22.44 that same month. In March, Cruz spent $2.12 per vote and Trump $1.85.
Trump got excellent value for money, although that figure is about to change somewhat as he injects $20 million into his campaign for targeted aggressive advertising and GOTV (get out the vote) strategies.
The big picture shows us how Democrats spend far more money than Republicans do. If this is only a presidential primary campaign, imagine how much in hard-earned taxpayer dollars they would spend once in office. Food for thought.