Trump allies launch new super-PAC to bolster GOP candidates during midterms as former president watches 2024 campaign

The new group, called MAGA, Inc., will merge with an existing Trump-sanctioned super PAC largely overseen by former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and former US Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell. Last month, that group had spent just over $2 million to boost Trump-backed Senate and House candidates in their primary races earlier this year.

“President Trump is committed to saving America, and Make America Great Again, Inc. will ensure it is achieved at the polls in November and beyond,” Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich said in a statement on Friday.

Budowich is tasked with running the new super PAC, along with former Trump campaign aide Steven Cheung, who will serve as communications director; old Trump poll Tony Fabrizio; veteran GOP employee Chris LaCivita, who will become the group’s chief strategist; and Sergio Gor, whose conservative publishing house released Trump’s first post-presidential book (a collection of White House photos and campaign footage) last year and will serve as senior advisor to MAGA, Inc. Alex Pfeiffer, a former producer for Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, will also join the operation.

Trump’s latest fundraising vehicle was first reported by Politico.
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With the November election fast approaching, Trump is under pressure to dive into his own mountain of money to support candidates he helped win in competitive primaries but who are now trailing or close to their Democratic opponents. The former president, who has complained to allies in recent weeks about Senate games in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Arizona, had about $103 million in his coffers at the end of August, according to campaign finance reports from his leadership PAC, Save America, and the Bondi-run group.

People familiar with the matter said most of those funds will be transferred to MAGA, Inc., which is expected to begin issuing major interim races next week.

“He’s very concerned about Pennsylvania,” said one person who spoke to Trump recently, asking for anonymity for fear of retaliation. “We were talking about Pennsylvania and… [GOP Senate hopeful Mehmet] Oz had said he would have voted to certify the 2020 election and the president says, “Why would he have done that?” ”

This same person said Trump has also expressed concern about Senate candidate JD Vance, who faces an unexpectedly competitive challenge from Democratic Representative Tim Ryan in Ohio. “He really likes JD, but Ohio is a little too close for comfort.”

So far, Trump has refused to open the taps much to help his handpicked candidates in their general election contests. While Save America gave $1 million to a pro-Oz PAC just before the Pennsylvania primaries, the former president has made no financial contribution to the Republican Senate hopefuls since then. In Ohio, Save America wrote a check for $5,000 for the Vance campaign in June.

Trump associates have long insisted that his spending be complemented by the campaign rallies and fundraisers he has held on behalf of several Republicans — including recent rallies in both Pennsylvania and Ohio — along with his coveted endorsement, which helped many of his elected candidates. win in controversial primaries earlier this year. But others say the former president’s lack of financial support should not be discounted.

“Trump never went out of his way to help candidates — unless he sees a way it would help him. His camp says, ‘Well, he’s helping them by doing these events,’ which I’d say aren’t that helpful because you never know if Trump is going to insult the candidate,” said Doug Heye, a GOP strategist and former Republican National Committee communications director. At his recent meeting in Ohio, Trump told the crowd that Vance was “kissing my ass” to maintain his support. .

Overall, federal data shows that Trump’s premier fundraising vehicle, Save America, has contributed more than $8.4 million to candidates and committees at the federal, state, and local levels since January 2021 — a significant amount, but virtually nothing compared to what other major Republican groups have pledged and only about $1.4 million more than what the former president spent in legal fees this cycle (nearly $7 million). The pro-GOP Senate leadership fund spends about $205 million on Senate race advertising this cycle, according to a CNN analysis, which includes what the group has already spent and its ad reservations for the following month. Meanwhile, the Congressional Leadership Fund, which is aligned with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, plans to spend $141 million on advertising this fall alone.

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One person familiar with the new Trump group said it will spend “heavily” this fall on key Senate, congressional and governor races. Trump will likely give preferential treatment to candidates he has previously supported, and the group will spend most of its spending on TV advertising and trying to get votes, said a person close to Trump.

The group had been in the planning stages for several months and could become part of its campaign apparatus if it makes a third presidential bid, as is widely expected.

“I don’t think anyone expects Trump to spend every cent he has, but there will be a significant investment in the future,” said the person close to Trump.

After months of looking at a pre-midterm launch date for a 2024 campaign, Trump is now waiting to see how Republicans perform in November — hoping to avoid blame if the party’s overall gains disappoint.

“He is convinced that there is no benefit to doing it before the midterms and there are many potential drawbacks. Right now the target is Q1 next year, but of course once the elections are over he can really handle it do any time.” said a Trump adviser.

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