Trump's campaign has burned up money like '10 monkeys with flamethrowers': GOP strategist
President of the United States Donald Trump speaking with supporters at an "An Address to Young Americans" event. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

On Tuesday, The Associated Press reported that Republicans — both those loyal to and opposed to President Donald Trump — believe the president's campaign evaporated its cash advantage by blowing through $1 billion in a variety of incompetent ways.

"Just two weeks out from the election, some campaign aides privately acknowledge they are facing difficult spending decisions at a time when Democratic nominee Joe Biden has flooded the airwaves with advertising," reported Brian Slodysko and Zeke Miller. "That has put Trump in the position of needing to do more of his signature rallies as a substitute during the coronavirus pandemic while relying on an unproven theory that he can turn out supporters who are infrequent voters at historic levels."

"Since 2017, more than $39 million has been paid to firms controlled by [Brad] Parscale, who was ousted as campaign manager over the summer. An additional $273.2 million was paid to American Made Media Consultants, a Delaware limited liability company, whose owners are not publicly disclosed," said the report. "Campaigns typically reveal in mandatory disclosures who their primary vendors are. But by routing money to Parscale’s firms, as well as American Made Media Consultants, Trump satisfied the basic disclosure requirements without detailing the ultimate recipients."

“They spent their money on unnecessary overhead, lifestyles-of-the-rich-and-famous activity by the campaign staff and vanity ads way too early,” said former John McCain strategist and Never Trump conservative Mike Murphy, who added, “You could literally have 10 monkeys with flamethrowers go after the money, and they wouldn’t have burned through it as stupidly.”

Trump's campaign manager Bill Stepien insists the campaign is in decent shape, saying, "We have more than sufficient air cover."

However, in recent weeks, the campaign has curtailed ad spending in Ohio, Iowa, and Wisconsin — three states essential to the president's re-election. Meanwhile, the campaign has at various points directed advertising to Washington, D.C. — an area he has no chance of winning — just so the president can see his own ads and feel good about himself.

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