U.S. President Donald Trump raised $7 million in campaign contributions on July 29 on a visit to Texas to promote energy policies that he hopes will show a stark contrast to Democratic rival Joe Biden.
At a pair of fundraising events in the Permian Basin in Odessa, Texas, Trump raised $7 million for Trump Victory, a money-raising committee that benefits his re-election campaign, the Republican National Committee and state parties. Afterward, he was to travel to nearby Midland, Texas, to visit Double Eagle Energy, a shale oil and gas company backed by private equity firm Apollo Global Management.
Trump's 16th trip to Texas as president comes at a time when a number of opinion polls show him in an unexpectedly close race with Biden in Texas, a state that has voted Republican in presidential campaigns the last three decades. In 2016, Trump won Texas by 9 percentage points over Democrat Hillary Clinton. Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz has been sounding the alarm about fears Democrats could win the state in the Nov. 3 election.
The president is trying to show on the campaign trail that Biden would adopt green policies promoted by liberal Democratic lawmakers that would roll back fossil fuel production at the cost of jobs and U.S. economic growth. Trump's tax and regulation cuts has benefited the energy industry and pumped up U.S. production of oil and natural gas.
In his speech at the dry, dusty and hot site of the oil rig, Trump railed against what he called the energy policies of the "radical left" and vowed to protect the industry from green policies aimed at producing more renewable energy.
"We are going to tell the Washington politicians trying to abolish American energy—don’t mess with Texas," he said.
Trump arrived in Texas as many oil firms are gearing up to report their worst quarterly results in years.
Oilfield services companies Halliburton Co. and Schlumberger Ltd. posted multibillion-dollar losses for their June quarters. Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. both expected to report large losses on July 31.
Importantly, many of the smaller oil and gas companies received federal pandemic bailout money, according to a Federal Reserve Bank survey.
Nearly half of about 160 oil and gas firm polled said they had applied for paycheck protection program money and 10% sought Small Business Administration economic injury disaster loans. A whopping 89% said they had received federal aid and 4% were waiting on a decision when polled.
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