Open Secrets: A gaping funding chasm between Clinton and Trump
“People shortchange that program,” said campaign finance attorney Trevor Potter, who was the lawyer for McCain’s campaign in 2008; McCain was the last general election candidate to accept public funds.
“He could still go out and play footsie with the super PACs,” helping the pro-Trump outside spending groups raise money without explicitly asking for checks. He could also still raise funds for his General Election Legal and Accounting Compliance account — money with which the campaigns pay their lawyers and accountants, which is not insignificant. And he could help the Republican party raise cash through joint fundraising accounts, as long as none of the money went to his campaign.
“I’m not sure he’d be giving up much,” Potter said. “Especially given that there seems to be a hole in his financing infrastructure.”