Is This Donald Trump’s Most Outlandish Fundraising Email Yet?

“Have you heard about the Hillary indictment?”

Carlo Allegri/ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.


The subject heading on the email is eye-popping: “Have you heard about the Hillary indictment?”

But when you click on the email, which on Tuesday afternoon hit the inboxes of people on conservative lists (hours after House Republicans released their Benghazi report), the news is not that the feds have dropped the hammer on the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. Instead, it’s Donald Trump, the apparent GOP nominee, begging for campaign cash.

In this email, he calls on voters to indict Clinton:

[O]n November 8th, the American people will finally have the chance to do what the authorities have been too afraid to do over these last 2 decades: INDICT HILLARY CLINTON AND FIND HER GUILTY OF ALL CHARGES.

Trump goes on to ask the recipient to donate five bucks—or 10, or 20, or 50, or more—to “indict.”

For what? He doesn’t specify. But he suggests there are many options:

As I highlighted in my speech last week, during the Clinton Presidency, there were many, many scandals. TravelGate, Whitewater. The personal destruction of Monica Lewinsky. The Rose Law Firm scandal. And, of course, anything involving Sydney Blumenthal.

Actually, that’s Sidney-with-an-i Blumenthal, a longtime aide and associate of Clinton. And it’s quite a move for a candidate to insinuate that someone associated with a political foe has engaged in illegal conduct, without offering any details.

But, wait, there’s more, Trump says:

Benghazi…Her illegal email server…The donations from terrorist nations to the Clinton Foundation. The list goes on and on.

Perhaps he missed this headline: “House Benghazi Report Finds No New Evidence of Wrongdoing by Hillary Clinton.”

In the past few decades of American politics, there has often been fierce rhetoric exchanged between presidential campaigns and their advocates, but the candidates have usually stayed within certain respectful boundaries. The dirty work has generally been done by surrogates and side groups. (Think of the Swift Boat outfit that went after John Kerry in 2004.) Trump has cast aside all notions of civil debate. He resorts to name-calling and schoolyard taunting. And now he’s raising money with a misleadingly titled email aimed at conservatives that suggests Clinton has been indicted. That’s sure to get them to click.

In the email, Trump repeatedly asks for a contribution. But he also claims that Clinton is lying when she says she is “crushing” Trump in fundraising. He adds, “This claim is laughable. i can write my campaign a check at any time.”

Perhaps. But then why is he resorting to such an unconventional measure to raise money?

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate