One in ten donors (11 percent) say they’re giving more due to the upcoming 2020 Presidential election, based on an April survey of 630 US donors sponsored by Dunham + Company. Regardless of whether a donor was conservative, moderate or liberal, those who would support a political candidate, party or PAC in 2020 generally expected their political giving to exceed their normal giving. 

Conducted by Campbell Rinker, the online poll showed that self-identified liberals were five times more likely to cite the election as a reason for giving more compared to conservatives (25 percent vs. 5 percent).  

The donors in the study identified as 27 percent somewhat or strongly liberal, 37 percent moderate, and 36 percent somewhat or strongly conservative. Older donors were more conservative.

Satisfaction with the Country in 2020

In the lead-up to the 2020 Presidential election, 51 percent of donors were dissatisfied with the country’s direction. This was slightly higher than the 48 percent in August 2018.   On the other hand, satisfaction with the country’s direction has fallen to 39 percent, compared to 44 percent in 2018. This means the gap between positive and negative scores has ballooned from -4 to -12 in the past 18 months.

While donors are not at all happy about the impact of COVID-19 on the country, they are happier with the way the federal political system is handling things now than they were 18 months ago.  A 55 percent majority is currently dissatisfied with the country’s federal political system, with just 38 percent satisfied.  However, this rating of -17 is a sharp improvement over the -30 measured in August 2018.

Methodology: This online poll of 630 US adult donors who had made charitable gifts of at least $20 in 2019 was conducted April 17-20, 2020 – the height of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.  The lowest amount given in 2019 was $20, and the highest was $66,500.  Responses were weighted by age to reflect the general U.S. population per the American Community Survey of the US Census. The margin of error is ±3.9 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.