Even Trump supporters who put their money where their mouth is don’t enjoy falling victim to the former guy’s deception. Newly released federal records reveal that Trump and the Republican National Committee (RNC) have been shelling out millions of dollars this year to refund donors who were duped by an obnoxiously dishonest fundraising scheme.
The scheme involved presenting online donation forms with a box that is prechecked to authorize automatic recurring weekly contributions. Not only would one-time donors need to uncheck the box but they would miss the fine print buried under lines of boldfaced and capitalized text, according to a New York Times investigation in early April. Even worse, some forms also contained a “money bomb”—a second prechecked box that would double the amount of the intended contribution.
These recurring donations arrived in Trump’s wallet in the final months of the 2020 presidential campaign when he needed them most. After losing the election bigly, the Fraudster-In-Chief then raised tens of millions of dollars for (ironically) crying fraud on the election, which helped replace the money he knew he might have to return. By deceiving his own loyal supporters in this way, Trump pulled off what amounted to a massive interest-free loan, according to the report.
On Saturday, the New York Times reported that new Federal Election Commission records from WinRed, the company that processed these donations, show that Trump and the RNC returned $12.8 million to donors in the first six months of this year alone. In all, Trump and the RNC have so far refunded a whopping $135 million to tricked donors from the beginning of the 2020 campaign through June 2021.
Trump, who does not and cannot learn lessons, continues his nervy con to this day. Trump’s new Save America political action committee, which has issued almost $800,000 in refunds (representing only 3.75 percent of its fundraising) in the first half of this year, still includes both a prechecked monthly donation box as well as a prechecked money bomb in its online donation form. I don’t know about you, but I prefer politicians who aren’t hellbent on swindling their own supporters.