Online groups are using Trump's voice, brand to dupe his supporters, siphon off campaign contributions: Report
President Donald Trump is already an embattled man facing a number of challenges on multiple fronts. Now, there is yet another story that will make him upset. Groups that have no affiliation whatsoever with his presidential campaign are siphoning off funds from his supporters under the impression that they are using the money to boost his re-election bid.
According to a report in Politico, dark-money groups, pro-Trump PACs and Facebook advertisers are using the president’s brand to dupe his own supporters into donating money to them.
In reality, these groups do not use the money to actually support the Republican, the report added.
These groups use Trump’s voice in robocalls seeking “emergency contribution” to the campaign, and also use his Twitter avatar on Facebook pages.
As per the Politico report, about 20 groups have brought in over $46 million between January 2017 and June 2019 and most of the funds have come from donors who contribute $200 or less. Some of these groups are named “Latinos for the President” and “MAGA Coalition”.
The situation has made Trump’s campaign uneasy as his officials now worry that these groups are misusing funds that could otherwise help the president’s campaign.
These unofficial campaigns also mess up the messaging of the president’s official campaign and makes it tougher to get together donors, the Politico report added.
The worst part is that they have admitted that there is little they can do to stop it.
“There’s nothing we can do to stop them,” Kelly Sadler, spokeswoman of America First, the only super PAC authorized by Trump, told Politico. “This is a problem for the campaign, as well as us, as well as for the RNC.”
The president’s campaign also blasted the act saying in a statement to Politico: “President Trump’s campaign condemns any organization that deceptively uses the President’s name, likeness, trademarks, or branding and confuses voters.”
“There is no excuse for any group, including ones run by people who claim to be part of our ‘coalition,’ to suggest they directly support President Trump’s reelection or any other candidates. We encourage the appropriate authorities to investigate all alleged scam groups for potential illegal activities.”
The campaign has also written to the Federal Election Commission seeking termination of all these groups that are raising funds in the president’s name.