Trump Campaign Paid $35K to 'Draper Sterling' for Advertising

And it only gets weirder
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 21, 2016 1:41 PM CDT
Trump Campaign Paid $35K to 'Draper Sterling' for Advertising
John Slattery, as Roger Sterling and Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "Mad Men."   (AP Photo/AMC Frank Ockenfels)

Among the revelations in the Trump campaign's May FEC report—it spent more than $200,000 on hats, is basically broke—was the intriguing detail that it paid $35,000 to Mad Men characters. ThinkProgress reports the campaign made four total payments on the same day to "Draper Sterling" for "web advertising." Draper Sterling was registered to Jon Adkins in New Hampshire in March 2016, according to Vanity Fair. It lists Adkins' apparent home as its headquarters. Paul Holzer, who cofounded medical startup XenoTherapeutics with Adkins, also lists the same address as his home, though a neighbor tells the Huffington Post he doesn't think both men live there. The Trump campaign paid Holzer and Adkins $3,000 each for "field consulting," as well.

ThinkProgress could only find one other public mention of Draper Sterling: an FEC complaint accusing it of being a scam that “helps perpetrate legally questionable activity.” A super PAC called Patriots for America apparently owes Draper Sterling more than $56,000 for "business consulting." Patriots for America is run by Holzer's brother, Adam McLain, who may be running the super PAC out of a coffee shop owned by Adkins. The coffee shop may or may not be real. And while none of this is outwardly illegal, it's definitely odd. A Republican consultant says Draper Sterling is "a front for Paul Holzer." Other Republicans say it's being used by ousted Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski to "line his own pockets." On Tuesday, bios for both Holzer and Adkins were removed from the XenoTherapeutics website, which was then briefly taken offline. One thing is for certain: Mad Men plots usually made a lot more sense. (More Donald Trump stories.)

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