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Quick, say something about a rigged system again.


Here's a fun little detail gleaned from the monthly campaign financial reports: Back in March, when Donald Trump was allegedly self-funding his primary campaign (he wasn't, really, even then), he paid himself far less for rent for his campaign headquarters than he has started charging his campaign since donor money really started rolling in. How much more? Nearly quintuple, which is a fun word to say! HuffPo has the fun details:

Trump nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign, according to a Huffington Post review of Federal Election Commission filings. The rent jumped even though he was paying fewer staff in July than he did in March.

The Trump campaign paid Trump Tower Commercial LLC $35,458 in March -- the same amount it had been paying since last summer -- and had 197 paid employees and consultants. In July, it paid 172 employees and consultants.

Huh! So fewer staff, but a hell of a lot more rent? Hey, that's capitalism for you: You charge what the market will bear, and you'd better be sure that a campaign HQ for the Republican nominee is going to be a lot pricier than the HQ for one of several primary candidates. That's just logic, and you shut up now about it being exactly the same location. HuffPo included this photo to show exactly what luxurious digs the Trump campaign staff in the Tower are getting for all that moolah Trump's raking in:

They don't even let the poor schlub have a red stapler.

“If I was a donor, I’d want answers,” said a prominent Republican National Committee member who supports Trump, asking for anonymity to speak freely. “If they don’t have any more staff, and they’re paying five times more? That’s the kind of stuff I’d read and try to make an (attack) ad out of it.”

Well thanks, Trump supporter! We bet that's already been forwarded to the Hillary Clinton campaign.

As usual, the July financial disclosures show a lot of payments to Trump's own businesses, just as they did back in May, when the campaign shelled out $1.1 million to companies owned by Trump and his family. Some expenditures for Trump Stuff are a little higher, some a little lower; total July payments to Trump-owned businesses came to about $800,000, which still isn't bad. We can see the wisdom of Trump funneling money to his own businesses. They're the only companies doing business with Donald Trump who can be fairly sure they won't get stiffed.

And while you might think that with less than 90 days to the general election, the Trump campaign might be ramping up its spending on staffing local offices and getting ready to get out the vote -- like people even DO that -- it turns out that the biggest single chunk of the campaign's July spending -- about half of it -- went to "Giles-Parscale, a web design and marketing firm" that does online fundraising for the campaign, says the Associated Press. And who the hell is Giles-Parscale?

It's a crossover vendor from Trump's real estate organization.

The campaign paid Giles-Parscale $8.4 million in July, about twice what the San Antonio firm had collected from it over the course of the preceding year. Brad Parscale, the president, is the campaign's director of digital marketing.

The big expense came as Trump put a new emphasis on online fundraising, after paying for his primary run mostly out of his own pocket.

Now let's not get too confident about Trump's seeming lack of a ground game -- like the cutesy story about the 12-year-old who "co-chairs" his office in Jefferson County, Colorado (really, his mom runs the office) -- because according to now-axed campaign chair Paul Manafort, the campaign really did hire campaign directors for all 50 states, but they all started on August 1, so won't show up until the September FEC report.

Then again, Manafort thought he still had a job with the campaign, so take that as you will. There are still 76 days to the election, so we figure Trump can still think of plenty of great ways to monetize his own campaign. Maybe ad space on his podium, as long as it's tasteful.

What better co-branding for a dick?

[Atlantic / HuffPo / AP / Vice]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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