Is former Vice President Mike Pence’s presidential campaign dead in the water?
According to campaign finance filings examined by The Associated Press, Trump’s No. 2 man had a paltry $1.18 million in his campaign account as of the end of September.
Pence’s campaign also has $620,000 in outstanding debt.
The AP reports that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has $12.3 million on hand, whereas Donald Trump has $37.5 million.
An anonymous source told The Washington Post that Pence had to lay off employees due to financial difficulties.
“It’s not clear whether Pence will reach the threshold of 70,000 unique donors to qualify for the third [Republican primary] debate, which will be in Miami on Nov. 8,” the Post reported.
However, these difficulties are just symptoms of a more fundamental issue: Pence’s message is failing to energize voters.
According to Politico, only 13 people showed up to hear a candidate speak in Iowa.
In early primary states like Iowa and New Hampshire, Pence’s efforts have yielded negligible polling numbers.
According to Real Clear Politics’ polling average, the former vice president only has 3.5 percent support in Iowa, putting him far behind long shots like South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott and Vivek.
In the Granite State, Pence is trailing even long-shot Gov. Doug Burgum of North Dakota in the polls with only 1.4% support.
Trump has a commanding lead over his Republican primary rivals, according to the polls.
Pence has bet his candidacy on a return to the conservatism of the George W. Bush era, which includes a rejection of his former boss’ foreign policy.
He has been overshadowed by other hopefuls like DeSantis and Nikki Haley, a former governor of South Carolina.
Some Republicans are saying that Pence’s poor chances in the election should convince them to abandon their candidate.
“For Pence and many of the others, you gotta start looking and saying, ‘I’m not going to go into substantial debt if I don’t see a pathway forward,’” former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said, according to the AP.
Even Pence admitted his chances are slim while speaking with reporters in New Hampshire.
“I know it’s an uphill climb for a lot of reasons for us, some that I understand, some that I don’t,” he said.