The last presidential election ended three months ago and the next one is not for almost four years, but President Donald Trump is set to travel to Orlando today for what the White House has termed “a campaign event.”
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The event, which is listed on Trump’s campaign website, will take place at a hangar at the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport, the site of a previous Trump campaign rally in September.
Asked about the event Wednesday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer called it “a campaign event” and said it is “being run by the campaign.”
President Trump, who has touted his election victory almost habitually since taking office, predicted “massive” crowds at what will be his first campaign rally since becoming president.
“In fact, I'll be in Melbourne, Florida, at 5 'clock on Saturday. And I heard, just heard that the crowds are massive that want to be there,” the president said Thursday at a press conference.
A White House official says the president will travel from West Palm Beach to Orlando aboard Air Force One to his Saturday rally, but will not use the jet as a backdrop, as he did so often with ‘Trump Force One’ during the campaign.
Trump wrote that his filing, “does not constitute a formal announcement.” But as a result, he is able to collect donations.
President Barack Obama didn't file his re-election paperwork until April 2011, 19 months before the 2012 presidential election; President George W. Bush didn't file until May 2003, 18 months before the 2004 election.
"Many times in the past, what sitting presidents have done in the first two years is really suspend any fundraising activities for their campaign committees," former FEC chair Michael Toner told ABC News in January, adding that the Trump campaign's move could help keep the dollars flowing. "It gives them flexibility to raise money for a potential re-election effort."