Donald Trump, Stronger than Expected

The criminal investigations of Donald Trump have greatly increased contributions to his election campaign.

Donald Trump has been written off countless times before. Despite his problems, however, he still enjoys a surprisingly high level of support. Polls give him as much as a 30% advantage over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, his main Republican presidential campaign rival. Indeed many ordinary Americans see the subsequent investigations and charges as the system’s revenge on a politician who poses an inconvenience to the team currently in office. The Justice Department has effectively inflated support for Trump to the point that he may already be certain of having the Republican nomination in his pocket.

Indeed, because of these machinations, in 2024 we are likely to see another election duel between Trump and Joe Biden. If Trump succeeds in winning again, it will be the result of interference in the election process. Interference not from Russia, but by the Justice Department.

Campaign Money

On March 30, a few hours after Trump was served with the first federal charges, donations to his campaign amounted to more than $4 million. Trump raised a total of $18.8 million in the first quarter of 2023. In the second quarter, donations increased to more than $35 million. The vast majority of these donations were small amounts. In the first three months of the year, the average donation to Trump’s campaign was only $34. The large number of such small donations indicates that the former president is still very popular among his voter base.

Yet the rising legal costs related to his criminal cases may threaten Trump’s campaign. Since the beginning of the year, committees supporting his campaign have paid $25 million to law firms. And since 2021, his lawyers received $52.9 million in fees based on estimates from official reports. Some say the expenses may have been much higher.

Stable Assets

While some predicted that Trump’s business empire would collapse after he left the White House, nothing of the sort happened. According to Forbes, his fortune was estimated at $2.5 billion in May. Therefore, it was the same as in 2020 and 2021 (at its peak in 2015 it was $4.5 billion). Trump’s fortune has significantly declined since 2022, when it was $3.2 billion. The decline was due to a change in the valuation of Trump’s Media & Technology Group, the company behind the social network Truth Social. Its value soared when investors expected it to be listed as a result of a merger with a special purpose vehicle that raises money from investors for acquisitions (SPAC) called Digital World Acquisition Corp. However, the stock market boom on SPACs had already passed, DWAC put the merger decision on hold, and the Securities and Exchange Commission began to look into the merger. The investment in social media proved to be a dead end for Trump.

Yet the former president is still making money from his name. According to official reports from 2021, he received a total of $12 million for speeches at various conferences and ceremonies. Among other things, he earned $2.5 million for his commentary before the boxing match between Evander Holyfield and Vitor Belfort commemorating the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Over the past two years, he has made at least $13 million from his golf courses and associated holiday resorts. His wife, Melania, also makes money on his name. Since 2021, she has earned over $1 million for speeches and over $380,000 on license fees from the social network Parler.

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