This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, May 23, 2016:
Donald Trump had, simply put, an amazing week. With two billionaires already endorsing him (T. Boone Pickens and Sheldon Adelson), he added several more, including one with enormous credibility in Republican circles. To top it off he was endorsed by the NRA at its annual convention Friday night even before he got to the podium.
Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, had another forgettable week punctuated by statements from her rival, Bernie Sanders, that he was going to stay in the race to the bitter end. He continued to flay her and distract her and draw attention away from her pending coronation in Philadelphia in July and towards the increasing possibility that she might not make it to the top of the ticket after all.
With Trump’s staff making nearly daily trips to visit with House Speaker Paul Ryan’s staff to iron out their differences, it might turn out that Trump won’t need Ryan’s support after all. Instead he is securing much of the money and the credibility he needs to run his race without it.
Phil Ruffin, another Las Vegas casino owner (along with Adelson), put a million dollars into Trump’s efforts last summer, recognizing the value of early money in a political campaign. Carl Icahn, the activist investor with a net worth of $17 billion, hasn’t given a dime to Trump, but that’s only because, again according to Swan, he hasn’t been asked to, yet.
Stanley Hubbard, the chairman and CEO of Hubbard Broadcasting, with a net worth estimated in excess of $2 billion, is one of the most generous donors to Republican Party candidates. He maxed out his contributions to every Republican running for president except Trump. He even gave a small check to an outfit working to overturn Trump’s campaign. But now he has turned Trump supporter, helping a super PAC support his campaign.
Thomas Barrack, a multimillionaire investor from California, is a longtime friend of Trump’s and is scheduled to kick off his West Coast fundraising efforts at his home on Wednesday. Joining Barrack will likely be another California real estate investor, “Papa” Doug Manchester, who wrote an early check to Trump at the start of his campaign and who is reportedly going to be big as Trump starts his fundraising efforts in the Golden State.
One of the biggest catches Trump enjoyed was securing Lew Eisenberg as the finance chairman of his Trump Victory committee. Although not as wealthy as some of the others in Trump’s camp, Eisenberg lends enormous credibility to his campaign. In 2002 and then again in 2004 Eisenberg chaired the finance committee for the Republican National Committee. He founded and then ran the Republican Leadership Council. After that he was heavily involved in running the Republican Party’s presidential campaign in 2008. In other words, Eisenberg is like the 500-pound canary: when he speaks, everyone listens.
Well, not everyone. The Brothers Koch are keeping their distance from Trump, and instead are focusing their attention, and their enormous war chest ($889 million), on down ticket Republican candidates instead.
But this is giving Trump the opportunity to flay Hillary along with Sanders. After receiving the NRA’s endorsement, he launched several missiles in Hillary’s direction:
The Second Amendment is under attack like never before. Crooked Hillary Clinton is the most anti-gun … candidate ever to run for office … she wants to abolish the Second Amendment. She wants to take your guns away. She wants to abolish [the Second Amendment].
He also promised the crowd that, if elected, he would abolish “gun-free” zones:
If you look at Paris – 130 people killed, hundreds of people still in the hospital…. These guys came in … they just stood there and just shot everybody….
If you would have had guns on the other side … I promise there wouldn’t have been 130 people killed and hundreds of people lying in the hospital to this day … if we had guns on the other side, it wouldn’t have been that way….
Gun-free zones – we’re getting rid of gun-free zones, OK, I can tell you.
According to political observers, this is exactly the tactic that will result in a win for Trump in November: attack, attack, attack. This continually puts Hillary on the defensive and is causing some of her supporters to consider leaving the Democrat reservation. It is also causing presidential polls to tighten, with Trump now leading, according to Real Clear Politics, for the first time in the 2016 election cycle.
The conventions are two months away and the election five months away, and a lot can happen in the meantime. But if Trump continues to put together weeks like the one he’s just had, even those betting real money on the presidential outcome in November might just reconsider. At present those real money polls are favoring Clinton going away.
ABC News: NRA Endorses Donald Trump for President