Definition and meaning of crowdfunding: Crowdfunding is a modern method of raising funds by pooling small contributions from a vast number of individuals. Facilitated by the internet and social media, this method has democratized fundraising, allowing anyone with an idea, project, or cause to seek financial support from a global audience. In politics, crowdfunding has transformed campaign financing. Instead of relying solely on large donations from a few wealthy contributors or entities, politicians and movements can now tap into the collective financial power of their supporters, regardless of the amount each can give. Individuals can give as little as $1 and know that they are making an impact in the campaign or movement they are supporting. This strategy aligns with the democratic ideals of inclusivity and representation, emphasizing the importance of many small voices over a few loud ones.
It’s easy to find out which politicians rely on crowdfunding and which do not. OpenSecrets provides a helpful database of the members of Congress, including their funding data. In the 117th Congress, the members of Congress who raised the greatest percentage of their total campaign funds from small-dollar donors were Bernie Sanders, Marjorie Taylor-Green, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.