Wednesday morning, politicos were abuzz with the news of the latest Trump shakeup. Paul Manafort, who reportedly has been “phoning it in” for weeks was out of power and the duo of Steve Bannon and pollster Kellyanne Conway were in.
The duo comes from the world of New York Billionaire, Bob Mercer.
Steve Bannon’s claim to fame is taking over the Breitbart Web site following the death of Andrew Breitbart.
Kellyanne Conway, who owns a polling company and most recently ran the Pro-Cruz Super PAC, Keep the Promise I that was largely funded by Bob Mercer.
Conservative insiders were surprised Conway was running the Cruz PAC at the time given her inexperience with campaigns . . . the pollster’s previous highest profile campaign position was as an advisor to Newt Gingrich’s 2012 presidential run.
Now, Conway as well as the inexperienced Bannon are in charge of the Trump campaign.
How did this happen?
According to reports, Donald Trump was cornered by none other than Rebekah Mercer over the weekend. Rebekah is the daughter and “gate keeper” to Bob Mercer.
During the talk at a Hampton’s fundraiser, Trump was visibly upset as Mercer unloaded rumors to his ear. She then reportedly talked up Bannon and Conway to lead the faltering campaign.
Aside from being the heiress to the Mercer fortune (which has landed her many board positions), Rebekah Mercer’s paid experience includes a short stint as a trader and the owner of a cookie company.
Where do Bannon, Mercer and Conway all come together? Oddly, they all literally coalesce at 8383 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills . . . suite 1000 to be exact.
The companies Glittering Steel, Cambridge Analytica, Breitbart News Network, Bannon Strategic Advisors, Bannon Film Industries, etc., all share the Beverly Hills address.
When Kellyanny Conway ran the Pro-Cruz Super PAC, she paid over half a million dollars to a new data company, Cambridge Analytica; half a million to Glittering Steel and $600k for “Polling” which presumably went to her own company.
That was chump change compared to what the failed Cruz campaign was pressured to pay Cambridge Analytica . . . a whopping $5.6 million.
Despite the high price tag for CA’s services, Cruz’s campaign insiders did not put much faith in the company’s deliverables and chose to use different data sets and models.
As it turns out, CA was “heavily funded” by none other than Bob Mercer.
According to the Dallas Morning News, Bob Mercer was also a funder of Breitbart News and has worked on several other projects with the new Trump CEO, Stephen Bannon.
It was known with the right circles that the Cruz campaign was heavily influenced by Mercer’s Mercenaries.
Now those same people, who were fervid supporters of Ted Cruz and would not hesitate to speak of Trump’s coming “implosion”, are literally running Trump’s campaign.
What do they have to gain?
We shall see, but if FEC reports begin to show large outflows of cash to certain companies including Cambridge Analytica, Glittering Steel or a one-man show Rigel Strategies out of Texas (that received $5.2 million in payments from Cruz PACs), we can start to guess.
Politics is a dirty business filled with self-interested people. Trump should be more cautious with choosing this campaign leadership and stick with people who have proven their loyalty instead of purchasing it from self-professed experts.