On Monday, the Republican National Committee (RNC) replied to a cease and desist letter from former President Trump’s attorneys stating that the GOP has “every right” to use his name and likeness in fundraising efforts.
This came after Trump put weak Republicans on notice. At CPAC, Trump urged donors to donate to his new PAC, Save America. “There’s only one way to contribute to our efforts to elect America first Republican conservatives and in turn, make America great again and that’s through Save America PAC and DonaldJTrump.com,” Trump stated. He repeated his stance in a statement released Monday night and said, “No more money for RINOS. They do nothing but hurt the Republican Party and our great voting base – they will never lead us to Greatness.”
RNC Chief Counsel Justin Riemer informed the Trump team via their own letter that the GOP “has every right to refer to public figures as it engages in core, First Amendment-protected political speech, and it will continue to do so in pursuit of these common goals.”
Alex Cannon, who is the counsel for Trump’s Save America PAC, was the recipient of the letter from Riemer. Cannon had previously sent a cease and desist letter to the National Republican Congressional Committee, the Republican National Committee, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) last weekend demanding that Trump’s name be used only with permission in their fundraising campaigns.
(Video Credit: Reuters)
The letter was crystal clear that the Republican National Committee and its affiliates must “immediately cease and desist the unauthorized use of President Donald J. Trump’s name, image and/or likeness in all fundraising, persuasion, and/or issue speech.” This appears to be a move by Trump to protect his brand and to assert control over Republican candidates.
“President Trump remains committed to the Republican Party and electing America First conservatives, but that doesn’t give anyone – friend or foe – permission to use his likeness without explicit approval,” a Trump adviser stated to Politico which broke the story.
The letter was sent to the RNC the same day that two emails were sent to supporters asking for donations by way of a thank-you card to Trump.
“President Trump will ALWAYS stand up for the American People, and I just thought of the perfect way for you to show that you support him!” one email stated. “As one of President Trump’s MOST LOYAL supporters, I think that YOU, deserve the great honor of adding your name to the Official Trump ‘Thank You’ Card.”
Trump has vowed to primary those he considers RINOs (Republican in name only) because they are actively hurting the party. The action also comes after 10 House Republicans and seven in the Senate voted to impeach him a second time.
The former president has a Super PAC that is gaining steam and millions of loyal supporters as a massive fundraising machine. The GOP is determined to leverage that same fundraising to take back control of both the House and the Senate. Trump’s brand is vital to their efforts.
Trump with a message and an explicit ask to send him money, and not other Republicans: pic.twitter.com/R62agEjmLP
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) March 9, 2021
Corey Lewandowski will spearhead a new super PAC for the Trump team and Brad Parscale is assisting with digital fundraising efforts, Politico reported.
The RNC’s reply to Trump’s attorneys makes note of the “close” relationship between the former president and Ronna McDaniel, the head of the RNC. It claims that Trump personally approved the use of his name for fundraising and events. It specifically mentions the donor retreat that is pending in Palm Beach, FL where Trump is expected to give a speech.
“The RNC is grateful for the past and continued support President Trump has given to the committee and it looks forward to working with him to elect Republicans across the country,” Riemer stated in the letter.
The Trump campaign and RNC joint fundraising committee, Trump Victory, raised $366 million dollars together in 2019 and 2020.
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