Politics

Trump Raises Millions For 2020 Campaign

| by Michael Doherty

Newly filed reports have shown that President Donald Trump is already amassing funds for his 2020 re-election campaign, before he has finished his first 100 days in office.

The reports, which were filed with the Federal Election Commission on April 14, show that the Trump campaign committee -- Donald J. Trump for President Inc. -- raised $7.1 million during the first three months of 2017, according to the New York Times. The money was raised in addition to more than $23 million reportedly raised with the Republican Party.

During the first three months of his first term in 2009, former President Barack Obama and the Democratic National Committee had raised only $15 million.

Trump held his first re-election campaign rally in February, just a few weeks after his inauguration, in a Florida airplane hangar.

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"Life is a campaign," Trump told reporters at the time, according to Time. "Making our country great again is a campaign. For me it's a campaign, to make America great again is absolutely a campaign."

Trump's campaign committee reportedly spent $6.3 million in the first three months of 2017, which includes $1.2 million that went toward merchandise including "Make America Great Again" hats, which were sold to raise funds.

The majority of donor's to Trump's campaign committee were those who gave smaller amounts, rather than large sums from wealthy donors.

According to Meredith McGehee, policy chief at Issue One, a group which seeks to "reduce the influence of money in politics," the president's early fund-raising may be a response to Democrats, who are expected to raise more money because of distaste for President Trump's policies.

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"They know the Democrats are already raising a lot of money by people who may not have liked Hillary or were not engaged, but have become engaged because of their reaction to the president," said McGehee.

The campaign committee has reportedly given $70,000 to Michael Glassner, who serves as the committee's chairman, and more than $40,000 to Vice President Mike Pence's nephew, John Pence, who serves as deputy executive director for the committee.

Trump's properties have reportedly received campaign funds on a regular basis, CNN reports. His campaign committee reportedly paid almost $200,000 for rent in Trump Tower during the first quarter of the year, as well as more than $58,000 for lodging at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Florida, and almost $22,000 for lodging at Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago.

"It's the same story of a president who has chosen not to disentangle himself from his business interests," said McGehee.

Sources: The New York Times, CNN / Photo Credit: Michael Vadon/Flickr

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