With recent polls showing that President Donald J. Trump is trailing Vice President Joe Biden in all of the key battleground states, especially the must-win state of Florida, President Trump made a brilliant strategic move last week by re-engaging with several key members of his winning 2016 presidential team — Susie Wiles, Karen Giorno, and Jeff DeWitt.
Wiles steered Sen. Rick Scott’s gubernatorial race to victory in 2010 and then went on to salvage Florida Gov.Ron DeSantis’ 2018 gubernatorial race against Democrat Andrew Gillum.
The recent announcement of Wiles and Giorno has already produced excitement among those who make up his Florida MAGA base and serve as the grassroots engine for the 2020 Victory ground game operation, including the critical Get-Out-The-Vote effort this Fall.
In January 2020, the RNC Trump Victory Team signaled that they were going to dominate Florida by providing the necessary resources to once again win the largest swing state in the nation, while also targeting certain congressional districts to help turn out the vote for the President. During a press call in early January, Eric Trump told The Floridian that his father and the campaign would target House Democrats like Reps. Val Demings, Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, Stephanie Murphy, and Charlie Crist, all of whom targeted the President for impeachment.
At the end of the first quarter 2020, to everyone’s surprise, the seat currently held by Rep. Lois Frankel (D), who is expected to face a spirited and contentious contest from Conservative investigative journalist Laura Loomer in November, is now in-play. Frankel was one of the first Democrats in Congress to call for President Trump’s impeachment and has been an active antagonist alongside her good friend Speaker Nancy Pelosi in working to undermine President Trump’s administration.
With Congresswoman Frankel representing the district in which President Trump and the First Lady now reside, Team Trump is now determined to flip this seat, and Karen Giorno, who is currently serving as the chief strategist for the Laura Loomer For Congress campaign, has been tasked with making this happen.
Given that in 2016 she served as the Florida State Director for President Trump’s 2016 Primary, winning 66 out of 67 counties, a feat that had never been accomplished before, Giorno appears to be the right woman for the job.
She later went on to serve as a National Senior Advisor in Trump Tower for the duration of the 2016 campaign after handing over the reins in Florida to Wiles.
Even with its 159,000 registered Independent voters, Florida’s 21st District has always been considered “solid blue,” but things are about to change. According to a recently released internal poll by Loomer’s campaign, in a head-to-head matchup, Loomer beats Frankel by 9 percentage points.
Loomer has demonstrated that she is a political force to be reckoned with, having now proven her fundraising prowess.
The free-speech firebrand, who is media savvy and holds unprecedented support with the Trump base, Loomer also appears to have a battle-tested grassroots and social media army behind her.
Loomer has successfully outraised Frankel and her Republican challengers combined for three straight reporting periods in a row has close to 600,000 Parler followers, has picked up key endorsements and support from high-profile Republicans. The President has re-tweeted in support of her candidacy twice, setting the stage for a possible endorsement of her congressional campaign.
Several individuals close to the President have informed The Floridian that it is highly likely that President Trump will be issuing a formal endorsement of Loomer soon.
Much of the success that Team Loomer is having is due to the strategic oversight and guidance from Giorno.
With the general election just four months away and COVID-19 still spreading across the state, traditional campaigning with in-person voter contact has become extra challenging. President Trump’s reliance on rallies to touch voters is still a HUGE TBD. And, it is unlikely that VP Joe Biden, who continues to run for president from his Delaware basement, will agree to rallies or even popping-up 51 field offices in the Sunshine state like Hillary Clinton did in 2016.
So, how is it that Biden’s poll numbers are better than Trump’s in the President’s home state?
At least three sources close to the President have confirmed that while President Trump was in Tulsa, Oklahoma for him recent campaign rally, he was made aware that donors, grassroots leaders, loyalists, and former Trump 2016 campaign veterans have repeatedly expressed concerns and made overtures to senior Trump officials warning that the Florida Victory operation is lacking leadership and direction.
In addition, word was that outside groups were positioning themselves to fill the void in campaign infrastructure. This is creating chaos, confusion, muddled messaging, and has resulted in a group of disruptors who are now grifting off of Trump’s name.
The chaos in Florida has not gone unnoticed by Team Biden, who is happily taking advantage of the disorganized Florida Trump campaign.
Unfortunately, this does not bode well for Kevin Cabrera, the Florida Trump State Director who is tasked with overseeing the command and control operation of this critical state.
One of the biggest issues of concern among Team Trump in Florida has arisen over the meteoric rise of activist Annie Marie Delgado. During the 2018 election cycle, the litigation counsel to Donald J. Trump for President Inc. (the “Campaign”) sent a cease and desist letter to Annie Marie Delgado, a real-estate agent and self-proclaimed grassroots activist who claims that she is currently running the campaign of one of Loomer’s primary opponents, Christian Acosta, who is linked to Cindy Yang. The FBI opened a public corruption investigation into Yang, a Chinese woman who represented herself as a Republican donor and South Florida massage-parlor owner who has been accused of selling Chinese investors access to President Trump through GY US Investments LLC.
The first Cease and Desist Letter that was sent to Delgado on behalf of the Trump campaign on May 7, 2018, accused Delgado of falsely representing herself as an “affiliate or authorized agent of the Campaign”.
The letter says:
“It has come to the Campaign’s attention that the Team Trump 2020 Florida Republican Club (the Club) is falsely representing to the public that it is an affiliate and/or authorized agent of the Campaign. Moreover, it appears that you are currently, and have been for some time, holding yourself out as a member of the Campaign and/or as having the authority to act on its behalf during fundraising activities and in other contexts. Any and all such representations that you or the Club are affiliated with in any way with the Campaign are false and must stop immediately.”
According to Florida’s SunBiz records, Delgado is the President of the “Trump Team 2020 Florida Republican Club”, a for-profit organization. She has been directly accused by the official Trump campaign of misrepresenting herself and her position with the campaign.
As can be seen in the May Cease and Desist letter sent to Delgado, the legal team for Trump’s campaign said:
“Your intentional and unauthorized activities and representations are highly likely to confuse, deceive, and/or mislead the voters, media, and public at large into believing that the Campaign endorses, sponsors, sanctions, or otherwise your activities, which it does not.”
After Delgado violated the first Cease and Desist letter that was sent to her in May, a second Cease and Desist letter was issued to Delgado by the Trump Campaign on September 7, 2018, reaffirming the campaign’s dissatisfaction with Delgado, along with her non-compliance. The second letter stated that Delgado had continued to “improperly” hold herself “out as a member of the campaign and/or as having the authority to act on its behalf.”
The letter closed by saying,
“The campaign is prepared to pursue its remedies in this matter to the fullest extent under the law. You are urged not to test the Campaign’s resolve in protecting its goodwill and reputation and you are strongly advised to immediately comply with the demands contained in this letter. In the event that you continue your unlawful actions, without further notice the campaign reserves its right to seek injunctive relief, as well as compensatory and punitive damages against you.”
Not only did Delgado disregard the first letter, but she is also now in violation of the Second Cease and Desist, which the Trump campaign has been made aware of. Recently, Delgado appeared in an interview with CD-21 candidate Christian Acosta and Ann Vandersteel, who the Trump campaign has also denounced. Along with Delgado, Vandersteel has falsely represented and promoted herself as a member of Donald Trump’s 2020 Advisory Board.
In January 2019, Trump campaign advisor Mark Serrano told the Daily Beast, “We formed our advisory board in April of 2017, which now includes 19 tremendous advocates for President Trump,” the statement said. “Ann has not been nor is she currently on the board.”
In the interview titled “President Trump’s Birthday Bash” that was posted to Vandersteel’s YouTube channel on June 15,, 2020 Vandersteel, Delgado, and Acosta appear in a video with an intro that falsely portrays itself as an official Trump campaign ad with a falsified “paid for by” Trump campaign disclaimer and a manufactured Trump 2020 seal which is also being used on a fraudulent Trump 2020 Facebook page that is operated by Delgado.
A quick look at this Fake Trump Facebook page shows posts made by Delgado in which she pretends to have access to the President’s daily schedule. The page also is peppered with campaign messages in support of Christian Acosta whose campaign Delgado has said she is managing.
Trump’s official 2020 campaign along with their legal team have been made aware of Delgado’s repeated violations of two cease and desist letters, along with Acosta’s close association and working relationship with Delgado.
Make or Break?
All eyes are on CD-21, which has become the bell-weather district for the 2020 Trump-Victory Florida campaign. How goes CD-21 goes Florida, and how goes Florida goes the nation. In order to flip CD-21 red and for the President to win Florida again, President Trump and his FL team need to eliminate these distractions in order to have a cohesive message and operation to beat Lois Frankel and Joe Biden.
What looked bleak just one week ago has been course-corrected by the President’s instinct and action to stick with winners. These things can happen now that the Wiles-Giorno dynamic duo has re-emerged in Florida to pull off another Trump victory.