Hillary Clinton wages costly fight with Bernie Sanders

Hillary Clinton raised $30.1 million last month and spent even more as she worked to lock up the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination, campaign-finance reports filed Sunday show.

More than half her February spending — $17.4 million — went into advertising buys as Clinton raced to rack up delegates in her battle with Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. She also spent about $4.3 million on payroll and related staffing expenses last month.

The reports also show Clinton donated nearly $93,000 to her own campaign last month in the form of “in-kind payroll and benefits.”

Despite the heavy spending, Clinton started March with $30.8 million in available cash and last week won five more states, extending her delegate lead over Sanders.

Sanders, who has attracted hordes of small donors to his populist campaign, previously announced collecting a whopping $42.7 million in February, but had not filed his fundraising report to the Federal Election Commission as of late Sunday afternoon.

The Clinton’s report shows she is getting better at raising money from smaller donors. Nearly 30% of the money she raised from individuals donors last month came in amounts of $200 or smaller, compared to roughly 20% for the entire election cycle.

Her campaign aides boasted Sunday that she now has collected campaign money from more than 1 million donors.

“Thanks to the 1 million people who have now contributed to our campaign and the more than 8.6 million people who have supported Hillary Clinton with their votes, we have the resources we need to continue to run a strong campaign all across the country and a nearly insurmountable pledged delegate lead,” campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement.