Last night, Donald Trump’s latest filing with the Federal Elections Commission on the financial state of his campaign was released — and it showed that the Trump Train is an even bigger disaster than anyone thought.
This is particularly amazing because just yesterday we upgraded Trump’s campaign from being a “dumpster fire” to a “landfill inferno” — and that was before learning about any of the bombshells in this week’s FEC report.
Below we’ll go through the five biggest revelations from the Trump campaign’s FEC filing.
1.) Trump only has $1.3 million in cash on hand.
This is an unprecedentedly low amount of cash to have on hand for a national presidential campaign. For comparison’s sake, consider that Hillary Clinton has a whopping $42.5 million on hand. In fact, both Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders reported more cash on hand in May, and Cruz dropped out right at the beginning of the month. Even more amazingly, dozens of congressional campaigns have more than $1.3 million in cash on hand, and they don’t require nearly the resources of a national run at the presidency.
2.) Trump’s campaign raised only $3.1 million in May.
Again, this is a stunningly low monthly fundraising number for a national presidential candidate. To compare, consider that Hillary Clinton raised $4.5 million in New York in just one day alone this month. In fact, as Washingtonian writer Benjamin Freed pointed out, the Veronica Mars movie Kickstarter raised over $2.5 million more in a month than Trump’s campaign did in May:
By comparison, the Veronica Mars Kickstarter raised $5.7 million in one month’s time. https://t.co/LjT0cpZffn
— Benjamin Freed (@brfreed) June 21, 2016
3.) Trump’s campaign paid Trump’s own companies more than $1 million in May.
Yes, despite being cash poor, Trump’s campaign still found ways to spend money on businesses that were owned by Trump himself. Per The Huffington Post, Trump reported in May spending $423,372 for rooms and catering at his Mar-A-Lago club; $125,080 in rent and utilities to Trump restaurants; $35,845 on facilities rental and catering on the Trump National Golf Club; and $29,715 on facilities rental and catering at the Trump International Golf Club.
And that’s only a sample of the campaign money Trump used on his own businesses last month! In fact, The Associated Press has found that expenditures on Trump’s own businesses account for 10 percent of his overall campaign spending so far.
In other words, Trump is using his own presidential campaign to pay himself via his own businesses.
4.) Trump’s campaign spent more money on ‘Make America Great Again’ hats than on web advertising.
Yes, seriously: Trump’s campaign bought up $208,000 worth of hats in May, while spending just $48,000 on data management and $115,000 on online advertising.
5.) Trump’s campaign paid an advertising firm named Draper Sterling $35,000.
Sure, Draper Sterling could be a legitimate advertising business, but it sounds an awful lot like a scam since it’s also a clear reference to the ad agency in Mad Men. Think Progress’s Judd Legum looked up the listed address for Draper Sterling and found what looks like a residential house:
This is the address listed for "Draper Sterling," the entity Trump paid $35,000 in May for advertising pic.twitter.com/TnDDf0OPyYADVERTISEMENT
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 21, 2016
Does that look like a Madison Avenue powerhouse to you?