The Trump campaign’s latest Federal Election Commission filings are a treasure trove—for everyone except Donald Trump. The campaign raised shockingly little cash in May, and has even less on hand. Though the candidate recently claimed on Twitter that his “campaign has perhaps more cash than any campaign in the history of politics,” it seems increasingly clear that by any ordinary understanding of the term, he doesn’t really have a campaign at all.
The most bizarre expenditure in the FEC data, as first noted by ThinkProgress editor Judd Legum, is a $30,000 payout to a New Hampshire–based advertising firm called Draper Sterling. That, of course, is half the name of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, the fictional advertising firm from the fictional television show Mad Men.
Trump report includes three 10K payments to "Draper Sterling" for advertising— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 21, 2016
Who is going break it to him that it's a fictional ad agency?
Lots of people asking if I'm joking about Trump's 35K in payments to an ad firm called "Draper Sterling"— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 21, 2016
I'm not pic.twitter.com/NMBXKjNLLn
Though the firm, which registered in March, appears to be real, it also appears to be totally sketchy. For instance, Draper Sterling’s registration points to a pleasant-looking suburban house:
This is the address listed for "Draper Sterling," the entity Trump paid $35,000 in May for advertising pic.twitter.com/TnDDf0OPyY— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 21, 2016
“Digital comms guy” Gregg Greene pointed out on Twitter that Trump had also paid $3,000 for “field consulting” to a Paul Holzer at that same address. Holzer, Greene noted, is listed as co-founder of a company called XenoTherapeutics, a Boston-based nonprofit that describes itself as, “A catalyst to bring life-saving xeno technology from the laboratory to patients who need it now.”
According to an article about Holzer, xeno technology has something to do with providing skin grafts to burn victims, which is helpful information, but does little to explain why Holzer also seems to be linked to a company that conducts political canvassing. It’s also probably worth noting that XenoTherapeutics lists Curt Cetrulo as its chief medical officer.* Cetrulo, as the company reminds us on its “Xeno in the News” page, was one of the physicians responsible for the first U.S. penis transplant. No word on whether Cetrulo is working on any medical breakthroughs for men with small hands.
*Correction, June 21, 2016: This post originally misidentified Curt Cetrulo as Paul Certulo.