Home Politics Trump camp plans to meet with outside groups after FEC relaxes coordination rules

Trump camp plans to meet with outside groups after FEC relaxes coordination rules

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Trump camp plans to meet with outside groups after FEC relaxes coordination rules

Former President Donald Trump’s campaign will invite prominent outside groups to a private meeting next week in Palm Beach, Florida, to talk about how to work together and plan for the election.

On Tuesday, the Trump campaign sent a letter to outside pro-Trump organizations asking them to attend a “completely off-the-record, private” and “invitation-only” meeting with senior campaign officials, according to a copy of the letter obtained by POLITICO. The meeting, which the letter describes as a “meeting of political minds,” aims to discuss “collaboration.”[ion]” and “priorities and plans” for the general elections.

“Please know that your attendance is considered critical and your effort to be there would be greatly appreciated,” reads the letter, written by James Blair, political director of the Trump campaign.

By holding the meeting, it is possible that the Trump operation and third-party entities will be on the same page about their plans. Two people familiar with the event planning said Heritage Action and Turning Point Action were among the pro-Trump groups invited.

A representative for the Trump campaign declined to comment on the letter.

The decision to hold the meeting, scheduled for the afternoon of May 3, illustrates how the campaign plans to use support from outside organizations. Now that President Joe Biden’s campaign has a four-year head start in field deployment and voter contact efforts, the Trump campaign is racing to catch up.

Trump is also at a significant monetary disadvantage: According to the most recent campaign finance reports, he has $93 million on hand, less than half as much as Biden.

The same weekend, the former president’s campaign will also host a three-day donor retreat in Palm Beach. Trump and more than a dozen other prominent Republican officials, including several potential vice presidential contenders, are expected to attend.

There have long been strict restrictions on how federal campaigns and political committees can coordinate. But a recent Federal Electoral Commission advisory opiniondated March 20, relaxed limitations on how they can collaborate on paid door-knocking efforts.

“We will share with you our macro view of the electorate and discuss new opportunities (in light of a recent FEC ruling) for our organizations to collaborate more effectively than we have been able to in the past,” according to the invitation. “We also ask that you come prepared to share with us any information you legally can about your priorities and plans.”

The letter indicates that Trump campaign officials and outside groups will exercise legal caution during the meeting. It notes that Republican National Committee chief counsel Charlie Spies and Trump campaign adviser Dave Warrington “will monitor this meeting to ensure legal compliance.”

Trump officials appear to be weighing the FEC’s new decision. Last week, Blair spoke to a meeting of the Rockbridge Network, a secret meeting of conservative donors. During his remarks, Blair alluded to the advisory opinion, which he described as a turning point, according to two people familiar with the comments who were granted anonymity to discuss the matter.

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