Former President Trump is growing frustrated with the lack of movement around a new super PAC intended to further solidify his influence over the GOP, according to two people familiar with the conversations.
Trump advisers first shared the plans in late February for a super PAC as part of a post-presidency political operation. Trump told allies at the time that he’d chosen his onetime campaign manager Corey Lewandowski to run the organization, but roughly one month later, the 45th president has started lashing out about the lack of movement on the project, sources said.
The sources, one of whom heard the comments from Trump directly, said the former president is agitated that there has been little tangible or visible progress on establishing the super PAC and ramping up activity in the month since the idea for the new super PAC was first made public.
“He’s lashing out that nothing’s happening. He viewed this super PAC as something that’s supposed to have his back, and it’s nowhere to be found,” one source said.
The two sources spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss conversations involving the former president.
Trump, through a spokesperson, denied that he is frustrated with the progress around the super PAC, with adviser Jason Miller calling the assertion “100 percent false.”
Lewandowski separately rejected the criticism of the super PAC’s slow ramp-up. He said in an interview that he does not take a salary, and he argued it takes time to properly stand up such a large operation, noting the Federal Election Commission only requires quarterly filings. Lewandowski said Trump had not expressed frustration to him at any point about the super PAC.
A super PAC can raise and spend an unlimited amount of money, though it cannot contribute directly to a politician or political party. One source said Trump has pushed for a board to oversee the nascent super PAC’s spending.
The sources that spoke with The Hill about Trump’s frustrations, however, said Lewandowski’s place in Trump’s orbit is not in jeopardy.
Lewandowski was Trump’s first campaign manager upon launching his presidential bid in 2015 and served in the role until he was fired in June 2016. He has since remained a recurring presence in Trump’s orbit, visiting the then-president at the White House regularly, serving as a senior adviser to America First Policies, an outside group that promoted Trump’s agenda, and writing multiple positive books about Trump.
He has been advising South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) in recent months as Noem weighs a potential 2024 run, and he is also said to be playing a role in recruiting candidates to challenge Republican lawmakers who voted in favor of impeaching Trump in January.
Trump has separately issued endorsements through the Save America leadership PAC, and Maggie Haberman of The New York Times reported Wednesday that Trump associates are trying to launch a network to take on establishment politicians.
Questions about when the Trump-aligned super PAC might take shape come as the former president has in recent days become more visible, giving interviews to Fox News and Newsmax on Monday to rail against the Biden administration’s immigration policies.
He has announced a slew of endorsements in recent weeks, mostly of senators facing smooth reelection bids. Trump on Monday endorsed Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) to challenge Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R), who repeatedly affirmed the results of the state’s presidential election results even as Trump, Hice and others spread unproven claims about voter fraud.
Via The Hill