Trump Campaign Spends Millions—to Confirm Biden Won Wisconsin

The recount Trump paid for added to Biden’s vote tally.

An election worker tests a vote counting machine at the Wisconsin Center Convention Hall on November 20 as part of the recount in Milwaukee County.Pat A. Robinson/ZUMA Wire

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.

The presidential election may be over, but the Trump campaign is fundraising like it’s 2019. Over the past 24 hours, 13 different email appeals from the campaign have flooded my inbox. In the weeks since the election, they’ve arrived almost like clockwork every two hours. Sometimes they offer a mystery gift. Other times, they criticize me for my lack of loyalty to the campaign, like this one from Eric Trump: 

The appeals are frantic, desperate calls to help fund the campaign’s legal efforts to “defend the election from the radical left, the FAKE NEWS media, and BIG TECH.” Of course, most of the money raised through such appeals will go to helping Trump retire campaign debt, of which he had more than $1 million as of October 14. But even if some of it really does go to Trump’s doomed efforts to overturn the election through litigation and recounts, potential donors might want to think twice about how the campaign is spending its resources before sending any money. 

The most recent case in point: The campaign paid $3 million of its donor money to the Wisconsin Elections Commission for recounts in two counties in the state, Milwaukee and Dane, where President-elect Joe Biden won handily. Trump had argued (baselessly) that the election was rife with fraud, and his campaign is trying to disqualify nearly 240,000 ballots cast in those two counties. The Dane County recount should wrap up on Sunday, but the outcome isn’t looking great for Trump. On Friday, officials announced that the recount in Milwaukee had netted an additional 132 votes—for Biden. 

WE'RE TAKING A SHORT BREAK…

from the big banner at the top of our pages asking for the donations that make Mother Jones' nonprofit journalism possible. But we still have upwards of $300,000 to raise by June 30, whether we get there is going to come down to the wire, and we can't afford to come up short.

If you value the reporting you get from Mother Jones and you can right now, please join your fellow readers who pitch in from time to time to keep our democracy-advancing, justice-seeking journalism charging hard (and to help us avoid a real budget crunch as June 30 approaches and our fiscal year ends).

payment methods

WE'RE TAKING A SHORT BREAK…

from the big banner at the top of our pages asking for the donations that make Mother Jones' nonprofit journalism possible. But we still have upwards of $300,000 to raise by June 30, whether we get there is going to come down to the wire, and we can't afford to come up short.

If you value the reporting you get from Mother Jones and you can right now, please join your fellow readers who pitch in from time to time to keep our democracy-advancing, justice-seeking journalism charging hard (and to help us avoid a real budget crunch as June 30 approaches and our fiscal year ends).

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