REPORT: Trump Campaign Stole Over $100 Million From Their Donors With a Sneaky Recurrent Donations Scam
One of the single lowest things that a person or entity can do is to have a payment system that looks for all the world like a one-time payment structure, and yet set it up to bury deep recurring payments, month to month. If one expects month-to-month billing, it best better be to the utility company or something very very obvious, or it gets damned close to fraud, if not crossing the line into criminal fraud. The NYT caught the Trump campaign, possibly crossing that line.
Is anyone surprised that when Trump got desperate around the beginning of September (Remember?), that they set it up to go week to damned week?
“Facing a cash crunch and getting badly outspent by the Democrats, the campaign had begun last September to set up recurring donations by default for online donors, for every week until the election. Contributors had to wade through a fine-print disclaimer and manually uncheck a box to opt-out.
You are in unless you figure out how to opt-out, which isn’t easy, you’re in. Sweet Jesus, it gets much worse:
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“As the election neared, the Trump team made that disclaimer increasingly opaque, an investigation by The New York Times showed. It introduced a second prechecked box, known internally as a “money bomb,” that doubled a person’s contribution. Eventually, its solicitations featured lines of text in bold and capital letters that overwhelmed the opt-out language.“
If you don’t opt-out, you’ve contributed double, a recurring double. This is diabolical because if someone intends to donate $100, they will donate $100, not $50.00.
But contributors have the ability to demand their money back, and many did:
“Over all, the Trump operation refunded 10.7 percent of the money it raised on WinRed in 2020; the Biden operation’s refund rate on ActBlue, the parallel Democratic online donation-processing platform, was 2.2 percent, federal records show.
Trying to stay ahead of federal regulators, evidently. Or we see no reason that Trump would have felt compelled to refund the money. If he didn’t want to steal it, they would’ve set it up in a way to steal it.
“It felt like it was a scam,” said Russell Blatt, whose brother Stacy in hospice care was “opted in” to monthly payments after making what he thought was a one-time contribution to Trump, then was confused why his utility checks started bouncing.
It is a damned scam! No “felt like” about it! When checks start bouncing, people’s lives get threatened with respect to money for food and rent, and their credit rating goes down, making their lives that much more expensive.
And yet no one is surprised.
jmici[email protected] and on Twitter @JasonMiciak