Trump, a real-estate magnate who has shunned building a traditional campaign operation, more than doubled his campaign spending to $18.5 million in July, but spent no money on television advertising last month or to build a ground operation, as Clinton and her allies blistered him on the airwaves.
Instead, $8.4 million — or nearly half — his outlay went to a San Antonio web design firm that has long done work for Trump-related enterprises. Trump campaign officials said Sunday that more than 90% of the money paid to the firm, Giles-Parscale, went to third-party vendors for services, such as digital ads to pull in campaign cash.
The campaign also plowed $1.8 million into hats, T-shirts, mugs and other campaign marketing products, the filings show.
“They have run the most untraditional campaign of all the major campaigns in modern history,” Austin Barbour, a Republican strategist based in Mississippi, said of Trump’s operation. “It served them well in the primary, but it hasn’t served them well in the general election.”