Trump supporters eager to ‘drain the swamp’ help fill Republican Party coffers

Martha Adams, a longtime Republican voter, said she is “a little miffed” at the and party leaders she feels are out of touch with the base’s populist mood. That’s in part why she has been responding to emails asking her to contribute to support President Trump’s agenda.

“He’s got a lot of roadblocks,” said Adams, 70, a retired speech pathologist from Austin, who said she has given a few hundred dollars this year — including $75 in May, two days after the appointment of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. “It’s just to let him know we still care and that we’re still here.”

Prodded by emails from Trump urging them to fight “a weak and self-serving political class,” and angered by the sense that the president is being treated unfairly, thousands of his loyal backers are helping redefine a party that has long cultivated rich contributors — one small donation at a time.

In giving to support Trump, his backers are pouring tens of millions of dollars into the coffers of the Republican National Committee, which has raised more from small-dollar contributions at this point in the election cycle than the national party has collected in more than a decade.

The low-dollar donations are helping fuel a massive advantage for the RNC, which has pulled in nearly twice as much as its Democratic counterpart this year.

The GOP’s success with small donors illustrates how the Republican Party, long a center of the political , has managed to turn Trump’s anti-Washington message to its advantage.

One key asset for the RNC: Trump’s willingness to lend his name to a barrage of party appeals, such as an email last month that urged donors to help “drain the swamp,” the president’s favorite term for the Beltway elite.

The national party also gets a cut of donations flowing to the Trump Make America Great Again Committee, a joint fundraising committee that primarily benefits Trump’s reelection campaign but currently gives one-quarter of its proceeds to the RNC.



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