Report: GOP Leaders Urging Trump to Spend More on Senate Races
Former President Donald Trump (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
By Charles Kim | Saturday, 10 September 2022 02:41 PM EDT
Republican leaders in Congress want former President Donald Trump to spend more of his Save America PAC’s around $99 million in cash on GOP Senate races, Politico reported Friday.
According to the report, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is privately urging the former president to spend some of the reported $99 million in donations his PAC has taken in to bolster Republican Senate candidates who are underfunded in key states.
"A lot of Trump candidates need help, like Blake Masters," Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told Politico. "My argument would be: 'If the people you endorsed do well, you do well.'"
Trump insiders told the news outlet that he has no obligation to fund the Senate races even as Democrats are raising more money than the GOP is.
"It's not Trump's job to elect a Senate majority," one Trump adviser told Politico.
While Trump may not be spending heavily on these races, including for candidates he endorsed, he is appearing at rallies for them and putting his clout behind the contests.
"President Trump has been completely invested in seeing his endorsed candidates win, which has already fueled his 98% win record so far this cycle," Trump spokesperson Taylor Budowich said. "Through the power of his endorsement and his massive MAGA rallies, President Trump is able to infuse campaigns with media attention, volunteers and donors in a way that has never been seen before in American politics."
According to OpenSecrets.org, the Trump PAC had $99,127,576 on hand in cash as of July 31.
"He's a penny pincher. He's not going to spend money on people when he can spend money on himself. In lieu of spending money, he can do events for you," a GOP strategist working on House and Senate races told the news outlet. "Everyone thought that, by Labor Day, he would be loosening up the purse strings a bit and money would be flowing in."
The PAC has sent the maximum $5,000 checks to several Republican leaders in Congress, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California and Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Jim Banks of Indiana, as well as several Trump-endorsed Senate candidates including Dr. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania and Hershel Walker in Georgia, according to Politico.
"I don't buy this spin that he has some moral obligation to spend millions on candidates. Now with that said, I do think it would be a politically smart move for him to spend big. But he doesn't owe it to these people," the Trump insider said. "There is a blame game happening between Rick Scott and McConnell … a game of 'cover your a**,' because no one wants the blame if Republicans do indeed underperform."