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Trump’s PAC donated $650,000 to Smithsonian to pay for paintings of him and Melania

Trump’s Political Action Committee has donated $650,000 to the Smithsonian Institution to help create portraits of him and Melania at the National Portrait Gallery, a new report claims

  • Donald Trump’s PAC gave $650,000 to the Smithsonian Institution to pay for portraits of the former president and Melania Trump
  • It is the first time in recent history that a political entity pays for paintings
  • The paintings are mostly financed by donations from private donors
  • The July 14 ‘charitable contribution’ was mentioned in Trump’s monthly Save America PAC filing with the Federal Election Commission
  • The money covers artist’s fees and other costs
  • The work has started, but there is no date yet for the unveiling of the paintings
  • The portraits will hang in the National Portrait Gallery

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A $650,000 donation from Donald Trump’s Political Action Committee will help pay for his and Melania Trump’s portraits at the Smithsonian Institution.

It is the first time in recent years that a political organization has financed a portrait of a former president for the museum. The paintings are usually paid for by private, individual donations.

But Trump’s portrait will be largely paid for by donations from his MAGA supporters, collected through his political arm.

The July 14 “charitable contribution” was mentioned in Trump’s monthly Save America PAC filing with the Federal Election Commission.

The money will cover artists’ fees and other costs associated with the Trumps’ portraits in the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian spokeswoman Linda St. Thomas said. The Washington Post.

She said there was another $100,000 private donation to cover the costs, but declined to name the donor.

‘Two artists have been commissioned, one for each portrait. The names will be released closer to the unveiling of the paintings,” St Thomas said Business Insider, which first reported the FEC application. ‘The creation of the portraits is in full swing. The timing of the unveiling of the artworks has not yet been determined.’

A $650,000 donation from Donald Trump's Political Action Committee will help pay for his and Melania Trump's portraits at the Smithsonian Institution;  above the Trumps on the South Lawn in December 2020

A $650,000 donation from Donald Trump’s Political Action Committee will help pay for his and Melania Trump’s portraits at the Smithsonian Institution; above the Trumps on the South Lawn in December 2020

The paintings are usually funded by private, individual donors and not by political entities;  the portraits will hang in the National Portrait Gallery;  above the Trumps in the White House in October 2020

The paintings are usually funded by private, individual donors and not by political entities;  the portraits will hang in the National Portrait Gallery;  above the Trumps in the White House in October 2020

The paintings are usually funded by private, individual donors and not by political entities; the portraits will hang in the National Portrait Gallery; above the Trumps in the White House in October 2020

These Trump paintings should not be confused with the official portraits that will be in the White House.

These portraits will hang in the National Portrait.

There is no date for the unveiling of the Trump portraits. The portraits of the Obamas were unveiled about 13 months after President Barack Obama left office.

The donation from a political entity for the artworks was legal because Save America is a leadership PAC with few restrictions on the use of funds.

The money from the PAC can be used for various costs. The most recent file costs for employee salaries, travel allowances, airline tickets, car rental, office supplies, ubers and legal advice.

Trump has been a fundraising machine since he left office. His leadership PAC has $99 million in cash reserves.

The National Portrait Gallery began taking portraits of outgoing presidents in 1994, and first ladies were added in 2006.

Private donors paid the costs.

Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama unveiled their portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in February 2018 - more than 300 donors contributed to the cost of the paintings

Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama unveiled their portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in February 2018 - more than 300 donors contributed to the cost of the paintings

Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama unveiled their portraits at the National Portrait Gallery in February 2018 – more than 300 donors contributed to the cost of the paintings

The portrait of Barack Obama was painted by Kehinde Wiley

The portrait of Barack Obama was painted by Kehinde Wiley

The portrait of Barack Obama was painted by Kehinde Wiley

The portrait of Michelle Obama was painted by Amy Sherald

The portrait of Michelle Obama was painted by Amy Sherald

The portrait of Michelle Obama was painted by Amy Sherald

More than 300 donors — including Steven Spielberg, John Legend and Chrissy Teigen — contributed to the $750,000 commission for the Obama portraits.

Those paintings were notable for being created by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald, the first African-American artists to receive the presidential commissions.

The Obamas chose the artists and unveiled the results in the Portrait Gallery in February 2018.

Obama’s portraits are currently on a national tour, according to the Smithsonian Instituteand will return to the gallery in Washington DC in October.

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