Corey Lewandowski, Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, has admitted that the campaign launch at Trump Tower was powered by paid actors.
In 2016, Lewandowski admitted that he lied when he said, “You’re familiar with Donald Trump. Nobody believes that when Donald Trump goes somewhere, he doesn’t get the largest, loudest, and most raucous crowds on the earth. It is, without a doubt, untrue. Nobody was paid by the Donald Trump campaign or Donald Trump to attend his announcement.”
Now, Lewandowski claims that he lied, but that it was all because of Michael Cohen, claiming that the former Trump lawyer hired the actors who were on hand to cheer Trump.
“That’s a Michael Cohen special,” Lewandowski claimed. “Michael Cohen decided that he was going to go hire one of his buddies and pay his buddy without getting any campaign approval. You know, $50 for every person to come in, to stand in Trump Tower.”
Cohen refutes this claim, claiming that Trump paid the partner of a public relations firm to “professionally” organize the launch event. David Schwartz, a partner at Gotham Relations & Communications, was in charge of the day’s planning.
“Any allegation of payments to actors is an absolute lie that was promoted by Corey Lewandowski,” said Cohen.
Schwartz confirmed Cohen’s account.
“The reality is we hired 50 people, some of whom were part-time actors I found out later on. But we hired 50 people to help coordinate an event that brought in thousands of people,” Schwartz explained.
In January 2015, Lewandowski was hired as the campaign manager. It’s unclear why Lewandowski was unaware of the firms hired or why he lied about Cohen recruiting actors. But, given that Lewandowski has been lying about the paid actors for the past five years, it’s difficult to know what is accurate.
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“I remember thinking, ‘Man, I’m surprised he couldn’t even get people there. That seems insane,'” Sarah Isgur, the deputy campaign manager for 2016 presidential candidate Carly Fiorina.
“It seemed strange,” Amanda Carpenter, then the communications director for the 2016 candidate Sen. Ted Cruz stated. “I was watching the coverage of ‘Oh, did they pay people to show up? Who were these people?'”
Schwartz confirmed that his firm had been hired to orchestrate the entire campaign announcement.
“That event was really our brainchild: The most famous escalator ride in the history of politics was that one,” he said. “Bottom line is, we had thousands of people there, and then the press accused us of hiring thousands of actors. Based on the fee that I got, that would not have been a good business decision on anyone’s part.”
“The reality is we hired 50 people, some of whom were part-time actors I found out later on. But we hired 50 people to help coordinate an event that brought in thousands of people,” Schwartz added.