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The president is already running for re-election, spending campaign cash at Trump businesses


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..... The day President Trump took the oath of office, he did something no chief executive before him had ever done on Inauguration Day, filed the paperwork to be an official candidate for reelection.

The move allows him to raise, money more than $13 million in the first three months of the year, and hold rallies paid for by his campaign, like this one last week in Cedar Rapids, Iowa....

.....All five of his campaign-paid rallies have been in states he won in last year’s election: Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, and Iowa.

Campaign events give him greater flexibility, like being able to sell Make America Great Again merchandise.....

...Tonight, here at the Trump International Hotel, just five blocks away from the White House, the first big fund-raiser of the 2020 campaign, it’s benefiting both the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee. The top ticket is $35,000 a head.....

....The reelection campaign spent more than $6.3 million in the first three months of the year. More than $450,000 of that went to Trump businesses, including rent at the Trump Tower in New York and Trump hotels in New York and Las Vegas, catering from Trump restaurants, and thousands of dollars for Trump bottled water.

Critics say holding campaign events at Trump properties also gives them free publicity and added prestige. A lawsuit from the Democratic attorneys general of Maryland and the District of Columbia alleges that, since Mr. Trump took office, goods and services sold by various Trump businesses have sold at a premium. It said room rates at his D.C. hotel have gone up hundreds of dollars.

KARL RACINE, D.C. Attorney General: Never in the history of this country have we had a president with these kinds of extensive business entanglements or a president who refused to adequately distance themselves from their holdings.

Read or listen to the full segment: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/president-already-running-re-election-spending-campaign-cash-trump-businesses/

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