In critical swing states where Trump and Clinton are competing for electoral votes, the disparity is stark. The Ohio Democratic Party has 502 staffers on payroll. The state Republican Party paid just 104 people in its last payroll period.
More than 300 staffers were on the North Carolina Democratic Party’s payroll at the end of September. That’s three times the number of state Republican Party staffers on the ground.
In Nevada, where polls show a tight race, the state Republican Party employs 67 staffers. The state Democratic Party has several times that number, 240. Iowa Republicans, who hope to preserve Trump’s relatively strong poll numbers, have 32 staffers. The state Democratic Party has 206 paid staff.
In Pennsylvania, a must-win state for Trump’s campaign, state Republicans employ 62 total staff — and state Democrats have 508 people on payroll. Florida Democrats have 678 paid staffers, compared with 150 people who work for the Republican Party of Florida.
Polls also show Arizona, normally a reliably red state, is a closer contest than anticipated. The Clinton campaign said this week it would invest $2 million trying to win Arizona’s 10 electoral votes — and the state party reported paying 230 field staffers last month. By contrast, the Arizona Republican Party paid just 12 staff members.
Among the battleground states on the map this year, Republicans maintain a staffing edge in just one state: New Hampshire, where the state GOP pays 222 people. Democrats have a staff about half that size.
But about three quarters of the paid GOP staff received small stipends, an indication they are among the ranks of trained organizers rather than full-time staff.
State party payrolls only hint at the paid staff advantage Democrats have as Election Day looms and early voting begins. The Clinton campaign reported paying 809 staffers in September, while the Trump campaign paid just 152. The DNC has 478 staffers, according to their FEC reports; the RNC has just 270.