In the fine print: Donations to Trump’s ‘election defense fund’ will be partially used to pay off campaign debt

    (*This story was updated at 7:53 p.m. on 11/6/20)

    Sixty percent of all of the contributions made to the Trump campaign’s Official Election Defense Fund will actually go to alleviating the campaign’s debt, according to the fine print on WinRed, a GOP fundraising site.

    If you visit the homepage of the official Trump campaign website, you will be met with a pop-up ad for the Official Election Defense Fund that says, “we need to fight back!” 

    A click on the pop-up ad will take you to WinRed platform which hosts this fundraising effort by the Trump Make America Great Again Committee, which is a collaborative fundraising committee between the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee.

    The ad’s page meant to fund litigation and recount efforts includes falsehoods surrounding the ballot counting efforts happening in several battleground states like Pennsylvania.

    “President Trump needs YOU to step up to make sure we have the resources to protect the integrity of the Election,” the Trump campaign’s fund says.

    But after a quick scroll down the page to the fine print, it is revealed that 60 percent of all contributions will actually go to relieve the campaign’s debt. And the other 40 percent — will go to the RNC.

    “60% to DJTP for deposit in DJTP’s 2020 General Election Account for the retirement of general election debt (up to a maximum of $2,800/$5,000) or, if such debt has been retired or any portion of the contribution would exceed the limit to the 2020 General Election Account, for deposit in DJTP’s Recount Account (up to a maximum of $2,800/$5,000); 40% to the RNC’s Operating account (up to a maximum of $35,500/$15,000); and any additional funds to the RNC for deposit in the RNC’s Legal Proceedings account or Headquarters account (up to a maximum of $213,000/$90,000).” the website says.

    If you attempt to contribute to the campaign generally through normal avenues, then 50 percent of your contribution will go to settling the campaign’s debt and the other 50 percent will go to the Recount Account, according to the fundraising posting

    “By donating through this page, you agree that your contribution to DJTFP will be allocated as follows (Multicandidate PAC amounts in parentheses): 50% of each contribution, up to a maximum of $2,800 ($5,000), to be designated toward DJTFP’s 2020 general election account for general election debt retirement until such debt is retired. 50% of each contribution, up to a maximum of $2,800 ($5,000), to be designated toward DJTFP’s Recount Account,” the posting says.