Pro-Trump super PAC raises $2.5 million in 6 weeks

America First Action, a super PAC supporting President TrumpDonald John TrumpNFL players stand in tunnel during anthem, extending protests 12 former top intel officials blast Trump's move to revoke Brennan's security clearance NYT: Omarosa believed to have as many as 200 tapes MORE’s agenda, has raised $2.5 million in the past six weeks, according to new Federal Election Commission filings obtained by The Hill.

The super PAC raised those funds between April 3 and May 16, according to an early look at the filing, spending about $786,000 along the way.

The fundraising haul puts America First slightly ahead of last quarter’s fundraising pace. The group raised $4.7 million in the first three months of 2018.


While the group normally files its fundraising figures every six months, it had to file a report ahead of next month’s Montana primary because it ran ads earlier this month attacking Montana Sen. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterPearl Jam criticized for poster featuring dead Trump, burning White House Montana GOP Senate hopeful touts Trump's support in new ad Vulnerable Dems side with Warren in battle over consumer bureau MORE (D) in the hopes of softening him up before his tough reelection fight. Montana’s primary elections are on June 5.

The America First Action ad blasted Tester for his role in sinking Trump’s former nominee for the Department of Veterans Affairs — former White House physician Ronny Jackson.

While Jackson was being considered for the post, Tester, the ranking member on the Senate Veterans Affairs’ Committee, released a list of accusations that surfaced during his committee’s vetting of Jackson. Among those charges were that Johnson was a lax distributor of prescriptions, drank on the job and contributed to a hostile work environment.

In the days after the accusations surfaced, the Secret Service released a statement rebutting an accusation that Johnson created a scene while drunk during an overseas trip. The White House denied another allegation, that he crashed a government vehicle.

Jackson withdrew his nomination during the fracas and Trump eventually nominated acting Secretary Robert Wilkie to remain in the position permanently.

The ad took Tester to task for his role in sinking Jackson and echoes Trump’s public frustration about Tester.

“In Montana, we value integrity and support our president. But Jon Tester spread false information about a respected Navy admiral, helping D.C. Democrats derail President Trump’s Veterans Affairs nominee,” the ad’s narrator says.

“He’s betrayed our trust, our veterans and our president.”

Tester is running unopposed in the Democratic primary, but there’s a four-way battle for the right to take him on.

State Auditor Matt Rosendale appears to be the front-runner. He has the backing of conservative senators like Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzBeto O’Rourke: Term limits can help keep politicians from turning into a--holes Election Countdown: GOP worries House majority endangered by top of ticket | Dems make history in Tuesday's primaries | Parties fight for Puerto Rican vote in Florida | GOP lawmakers plan 'Freedom Tour' Former spokeswoman defends Trump calling Omarosa ‘dog’: He’s called men dogs MORE (R-Texas) and Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulRand Paul’s Russia visit displays advancement of peace through diplomacy Rand Paul takes victory lap after Brennan's security clearance revoked Trump revokes Brennan's security clearance MORE (R-Ky.), as well as support from outside groups that have spent almost $2 million to boost his candidacy.

But he’s faced incoming attacks in recent weeks from those pointing to his move from Maryland to argue he’s an outsider.

Retired Judge Russ Fagg and businessman Troy Downing, a military veteran, are considered his top competition. State Sen. Al Olszewski is also running in the primary.