Anyone who ironically purchased a “Make America Great Again” hat may have boosted Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump’s campaign.
The real estate mogul loaned his campaign about $1.9 million while raking in about $3.9 million in contributions, according to his campaign’s latest FEC filing.
But CNN’s Dylan Byers noticed Thursday night that a managing editor for the conservative website Washington Free Beacon, Andrew Stiles, appeared among the donors listed in the filing. Stiles gave $544.25 to the Trump campaign, listing his employer as the Free Beacon and his occupation as “#1 Trump Fan,” according to the filing. Byers reported that Stile’s “donation” appeared to be for an order of Trump’s notorious “Make America Great Again Hats.”
Stiles did not respond to a request for comment from TPM. The Free Beacon’s editor-in-chief, Matthew Continetti, said in a statement that the money went toward buying hats for the website’s staff.
“As Andrew has said, he made what he thought was a charitable donation to the cause of making America great again, a cause that he cares about deeply,” Continetti said, as quoted by Politico. “Additionally, Mr. Stiles has disclosed in numerous online postings on our site that he was in fact a Trump campaign donor. In August, Mr. Stiles also presented our staff with really incredible Make America Great Again hats, and by the way, they do look fantastic, they look so good your head will spin.”
In the website’s spirit of trolling, Continetti added that Stiles would be investigated by pseudonymous ombudsman Biff Diddle, according to Politico.
Wearing “Make America Great Again” hats ironically has become enough of a phenomenon to merit a piece in the New York Times’ Styles section. Stiles and the Free Beacon staff wouldn’t be the first journalists to buy or wear one, either.
The report on Stiles’ “donation” to Trump was roundly mocked by journalists and pundits on Twitter:
— daveweigel (@daveweigel) October 16, 2015
— Jamie Weinstein (@Jamie_Weinstein) October 16, 2015
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) October 16, 2015
— Sonny Bunch (@SonnyBunch) October 16, 2015