POLITICS

Trump Launches A Fellowship Program, Pledges Big Investment In California

Spending time in the Golden State might not be the best use of resources.
Trump wants to recruit fellows to compete in California. It's gonna be difficult. 
Trump wants to recruit fellows to compete in California. It's gonna be difficult. 

Donald Trump's campaign is launching a venture called the Trump Leadership Initiative fellowship program to ramp up its organization in key states. But at least one of the states where Trump is organizing could best be described as a long shot.

In an email sent out by Donald J. Trump for President Inc., the campaign seeks volunteers and fellows based in California, with a seminar being held in Stanton on July 13.

The email, passed along by a recipient to The Huffington Post, gives a clear indication that Trump is following through on his pledge to put traditionally Democratic states in play. Trump has said he would compete in California during the general election, though few people assumed he'd follow through on those plans owing to the state's long liberal drift and his own immense difficulties with Hispanic voters, who make up 28 percent of the state’s electorate. Republicans have criticized the idea, arguing that it would drain his campaign of resources that would be better spent in easier-to-win states.

Trump, apparently, believes he can play in the Golden State. The fellows program, the email reads, will be "the backbone of the Trump strategy to launch the largest, earliest, and most diverse ground operation in California history."

Just what the TLI actually is, is not entirely clear. It is described as "an extensive training workshop to equip Trump Fellows with the skills needed to work as professional field organizers." Those fellows "will be trained and experienced in grassroots organizing, field operations, cutting-edge campaign technology, messaging & communications, and engaging in voter contact."

The campaign did not return a request for further information, such as whether the fellows would be paid. But TLI appears to be the cousin of a similar effort launched by the RNC. A link in the Trump campaign email led to an Eventbrite page for individuals interested in working for Trump to sign up for the Stanton event. That page, however, listed the event as part of the Republican Leadership Initiative fellowship program -- an RNC initiative announced a few weeks back.

Editor's note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liarrampant xenophoberacistmisogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims -- 1.6 billion members of an entire religion -- from entering the U.S.