Trump lags on fundraising after spending ad money in states he can't win

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The campaign has spent $1 million on pointless advertising and is now suffering from a funding shortfall.

Donald Trump's campaign and the Republican National Committee revealed Wednesday that they had combined to raise $210 million in August — well less than their Democratic counterparts.

According to Fox News, the $210 million total represented Trump's best fundraising money ever. But it's less than 57% of what Biden and the Democratic National Committee announced they raised in the same period: a record $364.5 million. Biden's haul gave him a monthly advantage of nearly $155 million.

To date, Trump and the GOP have raised around $1.3 billion, a campaign official told the network. But on Tuesday, a New York Times report on the Trump campaign's lavish spending showed how it had squandered a massive early cash advantage.

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According to the Times, over the past five months, Team Trump frittered away a nearly $200 million cash advantage. Expenditures to date have included $156,000 for planes to pull pro-Trump banners and nearly $110,000 for magnetic cell phone pouches to keep people from recording Trump at his fundraising events.

Perhaps most bizarre has been the more than $1 million spent on Trump ads in the Washington, D.C., media market. The area is not considered to be in play for Trump this election — Trump lost Virginia by more than 5%, lost Maryland by more than 26%, and lost D.C. by more than 86% in 2016. But the investment rivals the $1.3 million the campaign spent on television ads Minnesota, a swing-state that he hopes to turn red.

However, the D.C.-area ads were reportedly not designed to win over the strongly-Democratic leaning voters of Maryland, Virginia, or the District of Columbia, but to make frequent D.C. television viewer Donald Trump feel better about the state of his reelection bid.

According to Medium Buying, the Trump campaign has purchased TV ads in the D.C. area running through at least Aug. 24.

The massive spending to date has not given Trump a polling lead. He has trailed Biden in every major national poll since April. According to the RealClearPolitics polling average, Biden currently enjoys more than a 7 point national advantage.

On Tuesday, Trump suggested he might spend up to $100 million of his own funds on his campaign — though he has broken similar promises before.

"My Campaign spent a lot of money up front in order to compensate for the false reporting and Fake News concerning our handling of the China Virus," Trump tweeted, using a racist term to describe the coronavirus. "Now they see the GREAT job we have done, and we have 3 times more than we had 4 years ago - & are up in polls. Lots of $'s & ENERGY!"

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.