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Former Rep. Grayson raised $150k to investigate Trump but kept money for himself, says report

Former Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson raised $150,000 after asking donors to fund investigations of President Trump, but an investigation published on Wednesday revealed that his Resistance political action committee was mostly dedicated to returning him to Congress.

Grayson announced his effort on Facebook in 2017, a year after losing out in a Democratic primary race in Florida, with The Trump Dump blog and a promise to crowdsource information that could used to ‘punish, indict, or impeach,’ the president. 

It all came with a page run by the ActBlue fundraising platform to direct donations to his PAC.

Federal Election Commission filings show it raised $150,695 by the end of 2017, according to the Daily Beast.

However, little of the money was used to oust Trump.

Instead, the publication said, it spent most of the money on further fundraising and web services, including more than $50,000 paid to vendors who helped Grayson in his 2018 bid to return to the House of Representatives: technology firm Blue State Digital; phone solicitation company Hudson Bay Co. of Illinois; media consultant Dan Klores Communications; and staffer Ben Weaver. 

Former Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson admitted that his fundraising committee’s effort to pursue Trump were ‘minimal and basically abandoned’

Grayson set up the Trump Dump blog as he appealed to supporters to help crowdsource information that could help prosecutors and watchdogs 'punish, indict or impeach'

Grayson set up the Trump Dump blog as he appealed to supporters to help crowdsource information that could help prosecutors and watchdogs ‘punish, indict or impeach’

Trump was impeached twice during his four years in office but survived two votes in the Senate that would have removed him from office

Trump was impeached twice during his four years in office but survived two votes in the Senate that would have removed him from office

Grayson admitted that his fundraising committee’s effort to pursue Trump were ‘minimal and basically abandoned.’

‘It did not take off in the way that I was hoping,’ he said. 

‘We weren’t getting the kind of response that we wanted to get, it was not a successful organizing effort, so over time, we let it go.’

He ran unsuccessfully to return to the House of Representatives in 2018 and has announced this year his intent to run for the Senate next year. 

But in a post to supporters in August 2017 he suggested a new direction dedicated to ousting Trump.       

‘We will “crowdsource” independent investigations of Donald Trump and his henchmen driven by whistleblowers, and then feed that information to watchdogs and prosecutors who will punish, indict or impeach,’ he wrote. 

‘We will demand commitments from Democrats (and sane Republicans) to block Trump appointments, orders and legislation, and to impeach Trump if the Democrats take over Congress next year. 

‘We will boycott Trump businesses, and those of his family, allies and henchmen. We will make noise, particularly on our Days of Resistance, the 20th of each month (inauguration anniversary).’

Supporters are invited to become ‘founder members’ by clinking on a link that directs traffic to an ActBlue fundraising page. 

Grayson sat in the House of Representatives in 2017 when he launched a failed attempt to run for the Senate. Earlier this year he announced his intention to run for the Democratic nomination to challenge Sen. Marco Rubio next year

Grayson sat in the House of Representatives in 2017 when he launched a failed attempt to run for the Senate. Earlier this year he announced his intention to run for the Democratic nomination to challenge Sen. Marco Rubio next year

Grayson also acknowledged that The Resistance committee was a rebranded version of his House leadership PAC, an instrument commonly used by politicians to donate to other lawmakers.

Its only donation since rebranding was a $5,600 payment to his own early effort to unseat Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.  

But he dismissed any claims that he had used deceptive messaging to raise funds.

‘The leadership PAC complied meticulously with the law, and your innuendo that some hypothetical donor might have been somehow misled simply has no basis,’ he told the Daily Beast. 

‘There is no practice, or policy, or obligation of any kind that a leadership PAC indicates or discloses which candidate has that leadership PAC.’

Grayson represented Florida’s eight and then ninth districts in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2009 until 2017, when he stepped down to launch his unsuccessful run for a Senate seat.

Earlier this year he announced his candidacy to run again in an effort to unseat Sen. Marco Rubio.


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