Transcript for 538's Nate Silver on early 2020 polls versus fundraising: Which matter more?
Debate number two for the Democrats is next week. 20 candidates over two nights. A few got shut out thanks to polling and fund-raising thresholds set by the DNC. This week, campaigns also filed their fund-raising reports for the second quarter. Mayor Pete buttigieg topped the list, followed by Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and kamala Harris. Some of the campaigns are bristling at the markers set by the DNC and they'll get tougher for the debate set for ABC in September. This week we want to dig into the question, how much does fund-raising really matter at this stage? Here's fivethirtyeight's Nate silver. So let me give you two words -- Jeb Bush. Jeb Bush raised $156 million for his presidential bid in 2016 he wound up getting a whopping 2.8% of the vote in Iowa. Yes, bush's funding came from outside groups. Whereas Democrats mayor buttigieg and Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren raised a lot of money from smaller donors which is more sustainable. When polls dry up, the money usually does, too. Just look at Beto O'rourke, he raised more than $6 million in his first 24 hours of his campaign. As he dropped in the polls he raised just $3.6 million. A bit of ceiling in the money race. Raising money quickly. But after a good point, you run out ways to spend it. Only so many ads voters can tolerate. They get so much attention from the media having us talk about you is worth more than all the ads you can buy. President trump who raised relatively little, got $2 billion worth of media attention in the 2016 GOP primary. I don't buy that fund-raising matters all that much right now. I still think the poll is a better indicator of popular support. Nate may be right, but both matter for making the Democrats' third debate in September. The polling threshold doubles from 1% to 2%. The number of individual donors needed to qualify doubles from 65,000 to 130,000. Eight candidates have reached 130,000 donor threshold. Only six have hit the donor and polling marks. We'll be broadcasting the September debates live from Texas from Houston. On September 12th. And if necessary, September 13th.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.