“I fully support the Republican Party and key GOP committees, but I do not support RINOs and fools, and it is not their right to use my likeness or image to raise funds,” he said. But even when he tried to clarify that he supported his party, he put another plug on his own group. “When you donate to our Save America PAC at DonaldJTrump.com, you are helping the America First movement and doing it right,” he said.
Right now, the advisors say, Trump’s plan is to save money so he can remain a force in politics and help candidates challenge Republican dissidents like Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, who indicted him earlier this year.
Mr Trump, along with the national party, raised around $ 250 million between election day and President Biden’s inauguration. More than $ 60 million of this went to a new political action committee. This committee and the former president’s campaign committee were both transformed into affiliated political action committees. Mr Trump’s staff said this week that they have not started sending calls for funds since he left office, but had planned to do so in the coming days.
The Republican clash could resonate particularly in the House.
If Mr Trump manages to convince donors to give him money instead of directly supporting Republican House candidates, he could cause problems for Representative Kevin McCarthy, the minority leader, who is trying to retake the house in two years. He has to flip five seats to do this.
“If you control the money, you control the party,” said Dan Eberhart, a Republican donor.
Some Republican strategists noted that Utah Senator Mitt Romney, the party’s 2012 presidential candidate, was the biggest fundraiser name in GOP politics less than a decade ago. Now he hardly recognizes his party.
The strategists have downplayed the threat Mr. Trump poses to Republican fundraising. “The donors who are unique to him and would be affected by this message are people who would not have donated at all,” said Josh Holmes, a political adviser to Senator Mitch McConnell, the minority leader.
Mr Holmes also said that when the Biden administration introduced new guidelines like a nearly $ 2 trillion relief bill, Republicans would band together in the opposition and develop new constituencies for fundraising.