President Donald Trump and his Republican Party jointly raised $210 million in August, a strong sum but one dwarfed by the record $364.5 million raised by Democrats and their nominee, Joe Biden.
Trump’s effort released its figure Wednesday, several days later than usual, and almost a week after the Biden effort unveiled its complete, the highest for any one month during a presidential campaign. The president’s reelection team said it brought in more cash during its party’s conference compared to the Democrats did in theirs, and officials insisted they”would have all the resources we need” before November.
“The two campaigns are raising massive amounts of cash but have very different priorities on how best to invest it,” said Trump campaign director Bill Stepien.
“In addition to advertising, President Trump’s campaign has spent heavily in a muscle field operation and ground game which will turn out our voters, although the Biden campaign is waging virtually exclusively aviation. We like our strategy better.”
And whispers about a fiscal disadvantage led Trump himself to indicate he might set some of his own fortunes to the race.
Biden’s August total talked to the enthusiasm among Democrats to oust Trump out of office. The torrent of new contributions came out of grass-roots supporters as well as deep-pocketed donors and should alleviate any lingering concern over whether Democrats are going to have the ability to inundate the airwaves in key states.
The Trump effort, however, faces concerns about how it has managed to lose a huge financial benefit. Announcing for reelection the day of his inauguration in 2017, which enabled him to start raising money right away, Trump assembled an enormous war chest early on that advisers believed put him at a big advantage over the eventual Democratic nominee.
Trump’s reelection effort, including the Republican National Committee, has invested more than $800 million so far, while Biden and the Democrats have spent roughly $414 million through July, based on campaign spending reports. However, Trump’s staff has also gone dark on the airwaves for stretches since the election has heated up, raising concerns as to whether it had been short on cash.
Trump campaign officials have kicked off a review of expenses, including those authorized by former campaign manager Brad Parscale, who had been demoted this summer. A number of his choices have raised eyebrows, including a $100 million blitz before this year before Republicans were mostly paying attention, though that strategy was defended by Trump at a tweet Tuesday.
Parscale had a car and driver, unusual perks for a campaign manager, and his spending has been the subject of an ad campaign by the Lincoln Project, a set of former and current Republicans looking to conquer President Donald Trump. The ad imagined a glitzy Parscale lifestyle full of luxury automobiles and a tony condo in Florida.
The advertisement infuriated Trump, that has long been sensitive to the perception that others are enriching themselves on his title. And most in the effort, who mostly enjoyed Parscale, grumbled that he seldom showed in the suburban Virginia campaign headquarters, rather frequently calling in from his house in Ft. Lauderdale.
Some of the campaign’s expenses were created with the president in mind, including a streak of cable buys solely in Washington, a Democratic stronghold however a TV market viewed by Trump, a voracious consumer of television news.
Parscale had been a favorite of Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law perceived to be the de facto campaign manager. However, Kushner soured on Parscale since the debacle of Trump’s planned comeback rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, this summer and the president has complained to consultants that the campaign wasted its massive fundraising advantage, based on 2 campaign officials not authorized to speak publicly about personal conversations.
But Parscale’s internal critics give him credit for assisting the Trump campaign to construct an unparalleled Republican operation to attract small donors on the internet. Parscale, who did not respond to a request for comment, directed a significant investment in digital advertisements and list-building that appears to have largely compensated for itself.
Stepien, who replaced Parscale as campaign directorTrump Tells Governors to ‘Dominate’ Protestors After George Floyd’s Death, Says ‘They’re Terrorists’
in July, says he’s”carefully handling the funding.” That effort will be aimed just as much at suburban white listeners.
“We have much more cash than we had last time going into the past two months. But if we had any more, I would put it up,” Trump said Tuesday, vowing to open his pocket. “If I have to, then I would.”
Campaign officials, nevertheless, privately admit it is unlikely Trump will spend a lot of his own money, something he resisted doing during the general election four years ago.
Maybe in a bid to bury disappointing information, the campaign released its numbers Wednesday a brief time following the launch of volatile excerpts from Bob Woodward’s book where Trump admits intentionally downplaying the seriousness of this coronavirus pandemic into the American people.
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