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Ever since he announced his presidential candidacy, Donald Trump has repeatedly asserted that he self-funds his Republican campaign.
Trump claims this frees him from the influence of any particular political agenda or group. Trump's campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, used the same talking point on Tuesday:
Lewandowski told “Breitbart News Radio” on SiriusXM:
“The first thing is obviously is the inside-the-beltway guys have no control over Donald Trump and I mean that in a good way. Most of those people are bought and paid for by special interests, by lobbyists, by major donors.
Mr. Trump is funding his campaign on his own, he’s not taking donor money. He isn’t beholden to those people and can’t be accountable to those people who want special interests out of the government. He’s gonna do what’s right for the country.”
Thanks to BuzzFeed's Andrew Kaczynski, we also know that it is completely untrue.
The most recent quarterly Federal Election Committee filings from Trump's campaign shows the candidate funded just $100,780, whereas donors have given over $3.8 million to his candidacy. Furthermore, it shows that the candidate has previously loaned, rather than donated, an additional $1.8 million.
There is nothing illegal or wrong with the way the campaign is receiving or disbursing money, it's just not consistent with the campaign's claims.