The Trump 2020 campaign reportedly tricked supporters into making regular donations without their consent.
Donors who intended to make a one-time donation, including cancer patients, ended up making more donations.
According to the New York Times, donations were automatically set to repeat when supporters reached the final stage of their donation.
Although seemed to be an effort to strengthen political contributions to current President Joe Biden in the 2020 elections, the Trump 2020 campaign tricks supporters into regular or without explicit or known consent. It is reported that he made a great donation.
Survey of Federal Election Commission records conducted by New York Times The Trump campaign was found to have been forced to reimburse hundreds of thousands of about $ 64 million in the last two months of 2020. The campaign has refunded a total of $ 122 million, according to the newspaper.
Many of these accidental repeat donors believed they were signing up to make a one-time contribution, the New York Times reported. Some of the victims of this plan, such as 63-year-old Stacy Bratt, were cancer patients who realized they couldn’t pay their bills and rent due to repeated donations to the Trump campaign, the newspaper said. I reported.
It started with an unusual and “aggressive” move. In March 2020, a small, bright yellow box was added to Trump’s campaign donation portal.
“Make this a regular monthly donation,” read the text in the box. According to The Times, the box was automatically turned off as soon as the donor accessed the page.
According to the Times, donors had to opt out manually to avoid this recurring donation.
A few months later, the Donation Portal added a second pre-checkbox. This time around, Box automatically ordered additional donations from donors to commemorate Trump’s birthday in June, according to The Times.
Between June and September, donations were poured into the Biden campaign. That’s why the Trump campaign has stepped up that approach.
According to the newspaper, by September, the text of the first pre-checkbox was quietly changed from “monthly” to “weekly” donations.
At this point, Biden’s campaign was about $ 150 million ahead of Trump, according to The Times. At the same time, Trump’s own election funds were exhausted.
Unrealized Trump supporters have begun making several donations to the campaign during the month.
Critics who spoke to the Times blew up the move.
“It’s unfair, unethical, and inappropriate,” said Ira Rheingold, secretary-general of the National Consumer Advocacy Group.
“It should be in a textbook of what you shouldn’t do,” London-based Harry Brignul told the paper that he is a user experience designer familiar with operational digital marketing practices. ..
Jason Miller, a Trump spokesman, told the Times: “It’s worth noting the fact that despite raising more grassroots funding than any other campaign in history, there was a dispute rate of less than 1 percent of total donations.”
The Times reported that repeated donations were particularly rampant in the months from September to October after the campaign adopted a series of offensive moves.
In total, the Trump campaign returned an astonishing 10.7% of the money secured through WinRed, the Republican Contribution Portal. In contrast, the Biden campaign returned only 2.2% of the money raised through its Democratic counterpart, Act Blue.
Trump supporters who unknowingly donated money to the campaign filed fraudulent complaints when they noticed an unauthorized withdrawal, the Times reported.
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