Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee are having a little spat over who gets to have the upper hand in soliciting donations from Trump's cultists. Trump, ever the grifter-in-chief, wants sole claim to them and basically told the RNC to suck it. Over the weekend, he sent a cease-and-desist letter to three key GOP organizations on using his name or likeness in their fundraising solicitations: the RNC, the National Republican Congressional Committee, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
The RNC responded Monday by effectively saying: No can do, Mr. T. The group's chief counsel, Justin Riemer, said the GOP “has every right to refer to public figures as it engages in core, First Amendment-protected political speech, and it will continue to do so in pursuit of these common goals.”
The "common goals" being years of continuing to drain Trump's base for everything they are worth. Trump, who wanted that spigot all to himself, offered a blistering response.
“No more money for RINOS,” or Republicans in name only, he stated, according to the AP. “They do nothing but hurt the Republican Party and our great voting base — they will never lead us to Greatness.” Then, never one to miss an opportunity, Trump urged his supporters to send their money directly to his own Save America PAC via his personal website.
But guess what? These two peas in a pod still need each other. In fact, the RNC seems to be trying to smooth Trumper's ruffled feathers by moving part of its spring donor retreat from a Palm Beach luxury hotel to Mar-a-Lago. While most of the April retreat will remain in Palm Beach, the RNC suddenly changed venues for a Saturday evening dinner speech that Trump is headlining. Hmm—sounds like someone made a demand and someone kissed the ring. Voilà! Extra income for Trump's private club.
As The Washington Post writes, "The national party will sign a contract with Mar-a-Lago to host the event and will be paying Trump’s club for the use of the facilities and the meal, according to a Republican involved in the planning, who declined to share the size of the fee."
Come now, surely Trump cut his old pals at the RNC a deal.
Prepare for more volatility from this precarious relationship between Trump and the RNC. They're competing for the same dollars. They don't necessarily agree on which GOP candidates should get their backing in the upcoming midterms. And the real dagger in waiting? It's a relationship that's supposed to be mutually beneficial. Trump can't tolerate anything that's mutually beneficial—particularly when he views it as a parasite enjoying meals at his expense. He'd rather kill it.
Best of luck in all your future endeavors, RNC!