Donald Trump’s campaign chair admitted Sunday that his team was still “getting organized” but said his candidate’s unique ability to make decisions on the fly distinguished Trump’s campaign from Hillary Clinton’s.
“The good thing is, we have a candidate who doesn’t need to figure out what’s going on in order to say what he wants to do,” campaign chair Paul Manafort said in a Sunday appearance on “Meet the Press.”
Asked by host Chuck Todd to acknowledge that Trump was “behind” in manpower, ground organization and fundraising, Manafort said the teams were running fundamentally different campaigns.
“No, I think because what you’re trying to do is compare an 800-person organization in Brooklyn of Mrs. Clinton’s with an integrated system of the RNC and the Trump campaign, which doesn’t appear on a FEC report,” he said. “We have hundreds, we have actually thousands of people in the battleground states, political organizers who are now in place, we have state organizations that are in place, we have our campaign plans in place, we have our budgets in place.”
“We’re confident that we are not behind the Clinton campaign,” Manafort added. “They’re muscle-bound. We’re not.”
Federal Election Commission reports out last week revealed that Clinton, whose campaign is integrated with the Democratic National Committee, has $42.5 million in her campaign war chest, compared to only $1.29 million for Trump. Clinton was also far ahead of Trump in fundraising, a warning sign for down-ballot candidates.
Trump’s reliance on the RNC to prop up his flagging campaign apparatus translates to less funding leftover for congressional committees, state parties, and get-out-the-vote efforts.
Manafort, who formally assumed control over the Trump team after campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was fired last week, has spearheaded the effort to reverse weeks of negative press for the presumptive GOP nominee.