If there’s one thing we learned during Donald Trump’s campaign, full of events at his own properties and bills for his own branded products and services, it was that Trump is a man who lives for the petty grift. Whether it be the revelations of just how blindly crooked “Trump University” was set up to be (and dear God, we should never get over that) or charging his own campaign $1 million to set themselves up on a vacant, hollowed-out floor of Trump tower, the man made it perfectly clear that his integrity was for sale at blowout prices.
So it seems obvious that those seeking favors from the incoming grifter-in-chief would rush to buy a cheap piece of Trump.
Some of the country’s wealthiest Republicans and its largest corporations had similar impulses. Documents released this week by Mr. Trump’s inaugural organizers provide a glimpse of the big-dollar frenzy of influence-seeking and peacemaking surrounding Mr. Trump’s swearing-in, which raised $107 million, twice as much money as any other inauguration.
Not only did Trump collect twice as much cash as any previous inauguration effort, just think how little of that cash needed to go toward crowd control!
Some of that “twice as much money as any other inauguration” came from the usual suspects. Billionaire Robert Mercer, seemingly omnipresent benefactor of efforts to bring “alt-right” racism into the mainstream, and perennial Republican candidate-buyer Sheldon Adelson both plunked down cash. Much of the rest comes from corporations seeking favors.
At least $10 million — about one out of every $10 raised — came from coal, oil, and gas companies or their executives.