President Donald Trump's campaign has expected for months that Democrats would push for his impeachment, and began well before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's official announcement of an impeachment inquiry was made to work on ways to exploit the move for the 2020 re-election bid.
During the summer, the officials worked on splicing news clips of Democrats discussing the president's impeachment into a 90-second montage that was ready to release as soon as the impeachment push was announced, reports Politico. The move brought in 50,000 new donors and $8.5 million in just two days.
The push shows how Trump has been able to use grievances to create outrage from Republicans into fundraising dollars. With the impeachment inquiry, his campaign has been able to use their anger to grow support for the president.
Trump is able to "quickly define any event or issue on his terms and energize his base" through online advertising, Tara McGowan, a Democratic digital strategist who worked for a pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC during the 2016 election, told Politico.
"This approach enables Trump to set the narrative on his terms and paint himself as the iconoclast that is always under attack from the 'fake news media' and Democratic 'witch hunt,' and it clearly works as they continue to perpetuate it every chance they get," she said.
The president's campaign spent $1 million in Facebook ads in just 72 hours last week and sent out 65 million emails and 12 million texts asking for small-dollar donors to help fight the "hateful and baseless attacks" the president is facing.
"When you're under attack, your supporters are more engaged and that's the general position [of the campaign's messaging] — that 'We’re under siege,' and 'We need your help,' and 'This is ridiculous,' and 'Let's fight back,'" Gerrit Lansing, president of WinRed, the online donation processor used by the Trump campaign, commented. "That’s a powerful message."
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