Trump takes major step to raise money for general election
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Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTillerson: Russia already looking to interfere in 2018 midterms Dems pick up deep-red legislative seat in Missouri Speier on Trump's desire for military parade: 'We have a Napoleon in the making' MORE's appointment of a top fundraiser Thursday is "a small step in the right direction," but the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has a long way to go, said Mitt Romney's former fundraiser.

"This is a $2 billion business that you have got to set up," Lisa Spies told The Hill on Thursday. 

Trump has far to go to build a proper finance operation with dozens of staff spread across the country. 

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"I just don't envy him," Spies added, referring to the enormous task Steven Mnuchin has ahead of him in a campaign that, to date, has largely been self-funded. 

"He's going to need to spend his initial time telling donors that Donald Trump didn't mean what he said to them."  

The presumptive Republican nominee said in a statement that Mnuchin "brings unprecedented experience and expertise to a fundraising operation that will benefit the Republican Party and ultimately defeat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump touts report Warner attempted to talk to dossier author Poll: Nearly half of Iowans wouldn’t vote for Trump in 2020 Rubio on Warner contact with Russian lobbyist: It’s ‘had zero impact on our work’ MORE." 

But only one of eight well-connected Republican and Democratic donors and fundraisers contacted by The Hill — a former fundraiser for Jeb Bush and Scott Walker — knew of Mnuchin. Spies was not familiar with him. 

The media has jumped on the fact that both Trump and Mnuchin, a hedge fund manager and former Goldman Sachs partner, have bankrolled the Democrat they are about to face in a general election. 

As Trump's national finance chairman, Mnuchin is being tasked with leading the effort to raise the $1 billion-plus it's likely going to cost Trump and his allies to fund a general election campaign against Clinton, despite his prior donations to Clinton and other Democratic candidates. 

Mnuchin also has had professional ties to billionaire George Soros, who is among the biggest Democratic donors of recent years and is regarded as a bogeyman in Republican circles. 

And as a hedge fund manager and former partner at Goldman Sachs, Mnuchin represents two groups of people Trump and his surrogates have delighted in excoriating. 

Questions are already being raised in the media about the contradictions between Trump's appointment of Mnuchin and the billionaire's campaign's past statements about hedge fund managers and Goldman Sachs.  

Of Mnuchin's profession, Trump has said he wants to change the tax system to get "hedge fund guys" to pay higher taxes because they're "getting away with murder."

"The hedge fund guys didn't build this country," Trump told CBS's "Face the Nation" in August. "These are guys that shift paper around and they get lucky."  

The Trump campaign has also bashed Goldman Sachs to score political points against former presidential rival Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSasse statement: Trump nominee who spread conspiracy theories has a ‘tinfoil hat’ Coalition of 44 groups calls for passage of drug pricing bill For the sake of our democracy, politicians must stop bickering MORE, whose wife works there. And Clinton has been hit by Democratic rival Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersTrump has declared war on our climate — we won’t let him win Stock slide bites boastful Trump, but rising wages great for GOP Millions should march on DC to defeat Trump Republicans MORE for giving lucrative speeches to the company. 

Mnuchin said in a statement, “It’s a great privilege to be working with Mr. Trump to create a world class finance organization to support the campaign in the general election.”