After a lethargic start, Donald Trump is starting to bring some serious cash into its coffers. He brought in around $80 million in July, compared with $90 million for Hillary Clinton, according to Trump’s latest filing with the Federal Elections Commission.
So how is the campaign spending its money?
As has been widely reported, Trump’s campaign has not been spending heavily on TV ads or traditional campaign staff:
- USA Today notes that Trump has a staff of 82, compared with Clinton’s staff of more than 700.
- While Clinton’s just-announced $80 million ad-buy brings her total spent on TV ads to $150 million, Trump hadn’t spent a dime on television ads through July 31, before rolling out his first ads last week.
- Trump is even spending more on renting arenas for his rallies than on campaign staff, reports the New York Times.
Trump’s latest FEC filing shows that an outsized portion of his campaign expenditures in July—$8.4 million out of $18.5 million—went to Giles-Parscale, a small web services outfit in San Antonio, Texas. The company’s president, Brad Parscale, is the Trump campaign’s digital director and a major contractor of Trump Winery and the Eric Trump Foundation. The big increase in spending at Giles-Parscale is part of Trump’s push to up his digital fundraising game, reports the Associated Press. The Trump campaign has been directing so much business towards the web company that Giles-Parscale announced in June that it was planning to bring on around 100 more employees to deal with the increased demand.
The other major expenditure for the Trump campaign in July was travel, with $2 million spent on outside private jets and $500,000 going to the Trump-owned TAG Air.
The campaign also spent $423,000 at Cali-Fame, the California-based company that manufactures the iconic bright red “Make America Great Again” hats Trump and his supporters wear.
Even though Trump’s campaign staff is small, there is one person who surprisingly is still getting paid — Corey Lewandowski. Despite being fired in June, Trump’s campaign paid Green Monster Consulting, the firm owned by his former campaign manager, $20,000 on July 6.