MSNBC: Harris Is Prioritizing Fundraising Over Campaigning

Candidate skipped a union forum on Tuesday to attend a private fundraiser in Baltimore

MSNBC correspondent Hallie Jackson on Wednesday shed some light on the presidential campaign of Sen. Kamala Harris (D., Calif.), who has seen her poll numbers plummet over the last couple months.

Jackson said MSNBC's political team got an inside look at Harris's campaign apparatus, which she said can best be described as "rather bleak, rather uncertain."

"Her drop in our new poll is the latest in what's been a downward trend. You can see it here. Her numbers spiked a little after that first debate back in June, but since then this is what's been happening," said Jackson, while displaying a chart of Harris's poll numbers declining between July and September.

"Her advisers are telling our team she is putting cash over campaigning right now," Jackson said, "concentrating on private fundraising ahead of this month's third-quarter deadline."

Jackson asked NBC reporter Vaughn Hillyard whether the Harris campaign was concerned that it put too much emphasis on fundraising rather than campaigning in states like Iowa and New Hampshire.

Harris's poll position has fallen to sixth place among the Democratic presidential candidates in Iowa, with a drop of 13 percent.

"Well, the way the campaign sees this and why they've been having these fundraisers—they had one in Chicago this weekend. They had one in New York. She skipped a union forum yesterday in Philadelphia where we were at in favor of going to another fundraiser in Baltimore just yesterday," Hillyard said. He explained that the campaign wants an "egg nest" for next spring.

Hillyard went on to say a campaign official told him Harris will be seen on the campaign trail more often in October, as she prepares for Iowa Caucus and other early primaries.

"Later this week, she'll be coming to Iowa. This is going to be the first time she's been in the state in more than a month. In New Hampshire, she's been here just one time in the last two months and she hasn't been to South Carolina in more than two months," Hillyard said.

"So when you talk to voters, Vaughn, what are you hearing from them in Iowa about Senator Harris?" Jackson asked.

"There's a lot of ‘I don't know what she stands for' and ‘I don't know about her past frankly' and I think that's a concern for this campaign," Hillyard said. "She's been in this race, for now, eight months and the campaign has said all through the summer once people get to know Kamala Harris, they like her, but now the reality is that there are just four months left."

Prior to this segment, correspondent Steve Kornacki displayed Harris's recent poll numbers compared to some of the other top Democratic candidates in an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

"You think back to that first debate that was here on NBC at the end of June. She had that showdown with Joe Biden. There were polls after that debate that showed her moving up close to 20 percent. She has lost all of that gain and then some and it looks like it's moved more in Warren's direction," Kornacki said.