Trump’s still short on promise to invest $100M into campaign

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Friday, Oct. 14, 2016, in Greensboro, N.C. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Friday, Oct. 14, 2016, in Greensboro, N.C. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump has repeatedly said he will spend $100 million or more of his own money on his presidential bid. Yet even with a fresh donation, he’d be $34 million short of that promise.

The Republican nominee told supporters at a New Hampshire rally Friday afternoon that he’d given another $10 million earlier in the day. That means his personal investment over the course of the primary and general elections would have grown to about $66 million.

The infusion comes as Democrat Hillary Clinton hold a striking cash advantage over Trump, new Federal Election Commission reports show. As of last week, Clinton and her Democratic partners had $153 million in the bank, more than double the resources as on the Trump side.

Trump, a New York businessman who says he is worth billions of dollars, invested heavily throughout his GOP primary race. Then, during the general election, he slowed his personal contributions to about $2 million per month.

Trump’s giving has been tied to email appeals to his supporters, promising to “match” their donations up to $2 million.

He stopped making those solicitations in October, according to Tom Sather, senior director of research at the email data solutions firm Return Path. The firm tracks every email from political candidates.

His campaign resumed the “matching” solicitations on Friday. “I will TRIPLE MATCH any amount you can contribute today,” stated an 11 a.m. email message to his supporters.

The new gift — not yet reflected in public documents — would represent the most Trump has put into his bid since the month of March, when he loaned his campaign $11.5 million. Trump later zeroed out all of his loans, converting them into contributions that cannot be repaid.

His personal investment shrinks when accounting for about $9 million in campaign cash that has returned to his family and businesses.

That money has largely gone to the holding company of his private jet, but the campaign also paid for rent at Trump Tower, catering at his restaurants and even the Trump Ice bottled water that has popped up at his events.

And Trump’s Friday aid follows weeks where Clinton actually chipped in more than he did to cover political expenses. In the first 19 days of the month, Clinton herself offset $87,000 worth of campaign expenses while Trump covered about $33,000 of his.

Trump gave about $31,000 through the first 19 days of October, the period covered in the filing released Thursday, all of which went to cover rent and payroll. Trump also gave an additional $2,600 on Oct. 20, other filings show.

Trump has said for weeks now, during rallies and media interviews, that he will spend $100 million of his own money. In a CNN interview on Wednesday, he said he was “prepared to go much higher than that.”

During his Friday rally, he lightly revised his words, saying he would give “maybe close to or over” the $100 million mark.

“There’s something nice about that,” Trump said of his personal campaign contributions — quickly adding that it wouldn’t be so nice if he lost the election after spending so much.

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Associated Press writer Jill Colvin contributed to this report from Manchester, New Hampshire.