Election 2020

Major Donors Ask Trump for Their Money Back

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Two major Republican donors who have given or raised tens of thousands of dollars for Donald Trump are demanding their money back after the release of a 2005 video featuring lewd comments from the GOP nominee. Two emails released by NBC News illustrate declining support among donors for the party’s nominee.

“I was more than happy to donate to the Republican Party but I am mortified to hear the latest issues with Donald Trump,” wrote one donor in an email asking for his money to be returned. “His comments in regards to the female gender are very childish and embarrassing in today’s society.”

“I can not [sic] support a sexist man,” he declared. “I have three young children and will not support a crude sexist man. I expect a refund of my donation. Please process immediately and I thank you for your help.”

Another donor also requested a full refund. “I cannot express my disappointment enough regarding the recent events surrounding Mr. Trump,” the second donor wrote. “I fear that his campaign will assure a victory for Mrs. Clinton with disastrous consequences for the party and our country’s future. As a father of two daughters preparing for marriage, I am repulsed by his comments regarding women.”

“I regret coming to the Trump support event, and in particular allowing my son to be part of it,” the donor continued. “I respectfully request that my money be refunded.”

The fundraiser who worked with these donors told NBC News that the donors have contributed or raised tens of thousands of dollars for Trump. This bundler, who claims to have raised close to $1 million for the nominee, said he also is fed up with Trump and has notified the Trump Victory fundraising leadership that he will no longer raise money for the candidate.

“I give up. I’m totally walking out and disappointed, and the last 72 hours I have lost sleep over it,” the fundraiser said.

A leaked tape of Donald Trump making now-infamous lewd comments about women in 2005 has divided Republicans on the nominee. More than 40 elected Republicans and conservative leaders have condemned the comments that Trump made with Billy Bush, then host of “Access Hollywood.”

There has also been surprisingly vocal pushback from Christian conservatives.

Next Page: Why anger at the “Access Hollywood” comments is misplaced.

The New York Times‘ Frank Bruni attacked Republicans who explained their anger at Trump’s “Access Hollywood” comments  in terms of their offended wives and daughters.

As the father of no daughters, I’m appalled by Donald Trump’s comments about groping women.

As the husband of no wife, I’m offended.

What, you ask, do my parental and marital status have to do with recognizing the outrage of what he said? I wonder, too. But they must be germane, because Republicans seem unable to censure Trump without invoking female spouses and especially offspring. In this version of Take Our Daughters to Work Day, the work is displaying concern for women, and the daughters are less protégées than props.

Indeed, in Bruni’s eyes (as in the eyes of Yochi Dreazen of Vox), this style casts “men in the role of protectors and carried a stronger whiff of chivalry than of equality.”

But Bruni, as a liberal christened by The New York Times, may have the clout to declare himself offended. If a conservative white male were to call himself offended by something sexist or racist, social justice warriors would immediately point out his “privilege.” He can’t really be offended, because he benefits from the oppression — or something like that. Being offended on behalf of wives and mothers gives conservative men a leg to stand on in our status-conscious society.

Nevertheless, Bruni is right to call out a double standard here. Where were these offended Republicans when Trump attacked Megyn Kelly in sexist terms? Why did they not recoil in horror at hearing how Trump bragged about sleeping with other men’s wives, gained each of his later two wives by cheating on his current wife, and had the audacity to say he doesn’t need God’s forgiveness?

Where was the Christian outrage when Trump claimed to believe in Jesus but could never recall ever repenting — or even needing to repent — in his entire life? Or when he said (joked?) that the only way he would get to heaven is by winning the election?

I understand hearing Trump say “grab them by the p***y” on tape has a visceral resonance, but it shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone. This is Trump’s character, and we have known it for months and months. This is why some of us have been highly tempted to take a #NeverTrump stance from the beginning — we know he’s offensive and a reprobate philanderer.

In the general election campaign, many have decided to accept the hard truth: we must support him to defeat Hillary Clinton. I haven’t bought this argument — not yet — but it explains why some would “sell their souls” to back him. I can understand that.

What I cannot understand is the surprised outrage. Yes, maybe these comments are worse than Trump’s previous insults, but they merely reveal a character which has not changed. This is the same Donald Trump whose penchant for “telling it like it is” has inspired so many people.

Especially now that WikiLeaks has revealed that Clinton’s entire strategy was to rely on facing Trump in the general election, this earlier silence is quite frankly terrifying. Good going, GOP — if nominating Trump didn’t hand Hillary the election, your unwillingness to follow through most certainly will.