He solved the problem just by going to paperback.

Not that it's an especially new tactic, but literary genius Donald Trump tried to make his own book a bestseller by buying thousands of copies using campaign contributions, as one does, of course. Recent FEC filings show that Trump spent $55,000 at Barnes & Noble to buy a whole bunch of copies of the book, titled Crippled America in hardback, then actually re-titled Great Again: How to Fix Our Crippled America when it went to paperback. It's unclear why the rechristening happened. Either the original hardback title was such a downer that nobody liked it, or perhaps every time he saw a copy, the candidate felt compelled to twist his arms all funny and do his hilarious impression of that New York Times reporter with the muscular disease. Trump, that kidder, he just can't get enough of that! Oh, yes, and depending on how he handled the royalty money from the huge purchase, Trump may have violated campaign finance laws, although those really are just for little people.

So how many copies of the book did Trump end up getting for donors' $55,055? Dunno -- depends on whether he got the hardback, for which the sum would cover 3,500 copies; or the paperback, which would have amounted to a little more than 5,000 copies. And that's not even counting whether he bought the Barnes & Noble membership card and got a discount. By contrast, at Costco, he could have easily gotten over 110,000 rolls of Kirkland Signature toilet paper and had change left over.

Bet he had a really pressing need for all those books, though, huh? Possibly to insulate the bare drywall cubicles at his campaign office, where the rent Trump pays himself just quadrupled?

A spokesperson for the Republican nominee told The Daily Beast the books were purchased “as part of gifting at the convention, which we have to do.” Sure enough, delegates in attendance at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland in July were given canvas tote bags, stamped with the Trump slogan, and filled with copies of Crippled America, as well as Kleenex and Make America Great Again! cups, hats, and T-shirts. Delegates were also given plastic fetus figurines.

We should add that the plastic feti are not normally included with the Trump book. You'll have to get your own if you want to put together your very own Republican Delegate cosplay. The Republican National Committee chose not to reply to the Daily Beast's inquiries about whether candidates' awful campaign books are a traditional "requirement" for the convention, although a spokesperson for the Hillary Clinton campaign apparently had to suppress some snickers while explaining, "We think we’ve probably purchased a copy or two just to have in the office, but the campaign has never purchased her book in bulk or anything close to that."

As to the legality of this latest variation on self-financed campaigning, a spokesperson for the nonprofit Campaign Legal Center named Paul "No Relation, Really, Never Even Been To Wisconsin" Ryan explained that if Trump accepted royalties for the campaign's purchases of the book, that would be a big old violation of campaign finance laws:

“It’s fine for a candidate’s book to be purchased by his committee, but it’s impermissible to receive royalties from the publisher,” Ryan said. “That amounts to an illegal conversion of campaign funds to personal use. There’s a well established precedent from the FEC that funds from the campaign account can’t end up in your own pocket.”

(Er ... huh.)

So surely the Trump campaign was aware of that and immediately said they had done nothing of the sort, right? You guessed it: No comment from either the campaign or from Simon and Schuster, Trump's publisher. They're probably just trying not to look like they're bragging about how incredibly well the book is selling to people who aren't the Donald Trump campaign.

But the bulk purchase did at least get the book onto the bestseller lists, right? Again, not so much: the New York Times is very aware of that strategy, and adjusts its bestseller list to weed out obvious bulk purchases. And sadly, Trump's excellent book didn't make either the regular nonfiction or the political nonfiction list in May, which just goes to show how biased the liberal media are.

In the meantime, Trump continues to tell his campaign rally audiences what a corrupt cheating schemer that Hillary Clinton is, always trying to scam a buck off everyone.

[Daily Beast]

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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