Remember when Trump boycotted the Fox News debate and held a fundraiser in Iowa for veterans’ groups earlier in the year – and then publicly boasted about the fact that he raised $6 million? Well, it wasn’t true.
A Washington Post investigation revealed earlier that they could only find evidence of $3.1 million in donations, and now the Trump campaign is being forced to admit that, in fact, it did not raise the $6 million as promised.
Campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said the fundraiser actually netted about $4.5 million, or 75 percent of the total that Trump announced.
Lewandowski blamed the shortfall on Trump’s own wealthy acquaintances. He said some of them had promised big donations that Trump was counting on when he said he’d raised $6 million. But Lewandowski said these donors backed out and gave nothing.
It gets even worse – Trump’s manager isn’t even entirely sure of the total money raised and is refusing to divulge any information on the matter.
“The money is fully spent. Mr. Trump’s money is fully spent,” Lewandowski said.
Who did Trump give to, and in what amounts?
“He’s not going to share that information,” Lewandowski said.
Now, the Trump campaign’s excuse might have merit, there might have been individuals who “promised” to donate, but remember, these are supposedly his “friends” or “acquaintances,” whatever you want to call them. Is this who Trump surrounds himself with? Either way, Trump’s fundraising announcement didn’t hold up to water, at best, and it was an intentional lie, at worst.
Right now – as it stands – only half of the reported fundraising total has been given to veterans’ groups. While that’s still a large amount, it raises serious questions about the legitimacy of how Trump has been running his campaign. After the fundraiser, the campaign spent weeks stonewalling reporters seeking to get more information – and now we know why.
“Why should I give you records?” Trump said in an interview with The Post this month. “I don’t have to give you records.”
“That’s just shady. Right? No matter how you cut it, that’s just shady,” Rieckhoff said. “If he was going to make it right, a couple of weeks before Memorial Day would be a good time to do it. It behooves him, not just politically but ethically, to come forward and account for this money.”
“We haven’t heard anything,” said Judy Schaffer of Heroes to Heroes, a New Jersey-based group that sends veterans on nondenominational trips to Israel to prevent suicide and promote “spiritual healing.” Her group had received a donation from Trump’s personal foundation years before.
“We have a waiting list of over 200 veterans. Many of them have already attempted suicide,” Schaffer said this week. “And it keeps me up at night, not being able to send more people.”
There are so many things that don’t add up. We already know the $6 million figure was a lie, but why is Trump’s campaign refusing to comment further on this?
Featured Image via Getty Images.