Trump Turns Mugshot Into Big Money

Former President Donald Trump’s 2024 campaign has raised nearly $20 million over the last 3 weeks, a haul which coincides with the federal indictment filed against him in Washington, D.C., and the arrest in Atlanta and subsequent mugshot which went viral almost instantly.

According to the Trump campaign, they raised over $4 million on Friday alone, the single highest-grossing day of the entire 2024 campaign so far, part of a $7.1 million take after his mugshot was snapped Thursday night.

Trump’s campaign has cashed in on his legal travails, offering merchandise from t-shirts to bumper stickers featuring the mugshot with the same tagline he used when tweeting out the image: “NEVER SURRENDER.”

The campaign expects to cross the $20 million mark within the next few days, indicating organic donations have spiked since Trump tweeted the mugshot out on the social media giant X. The post marked his first appearance on the platform since he was banned in the wake of the January 6th protests.

The fundraising totals represent a major boost for Trump over the competition. The most recent filings, from the 2nd quarter of 2023, show him raising the 3rd most money of the major candidates, bringing in $17.7 million, compared to $20.1 million for Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), and $19.9 million for President Joe Biden.

However, Trump is lapping the field in small-dollar donors. $14.6 million of his 2nd quarter total came from donations of $200 or less, compared with DeSantis, whose small-dollar donations totaled less than $3 million.

The 2020 Presidential election was the costliest ever, with expenditures totaling over $3 billion. Current expenditure rates suggest spending on 2024 will exceed that number.

Trump was previously barred from Twitter, now X, when the then-management of the social media network claimed his presence on the site could create a “risk of further incitement of violence.”

Billionaire Elon Musk, who later bought the site, reinstated Trump’s account after running a poll asking whether the former President should be allowed back. Millions of users answered in the affirmative. Musk also retweeted Trump’s mugshot post, adding the comment “next level.”