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    Donald Trump fundraiser in London ‘already has $2m’ day before event

    By Ben Quinn,

    30 days ago
    Nigel Farage is welcomed by Donald Trump to speak at a campaign rally in 2016. Photograph: Gerald Herbert/AP

    A Donald Trump fundraiser in London, where his eldest son will be the star guest, has already clocked up $2m (£1.57m) in donations before it takes place on Wednesday, according to organisers.

    The event is being hosted by the actor and singer Holly Valance, who has become an increasingly influential figure on Britain’s radical right since meeting the former president in the US in the company of Nigel Farage.

    Farage will take a break from campaigning in the general election to attend the event along with American Republicans, including people who served in the last Trump White House and some tipped for roles if he wins again.

    They include Richard Grenell – a former acting director of US national intelligence who served as the US ambassador to Germany – who has been playing a role as a roving international envoy for Trump .

    The event is billed as a reception and dinner with Donald Trump Jr and his fiancee, Kimberly Guilfoyle, a lawyer and former Fox News host.

    Other hosts include Woody Johnson, the owner of the New York Jets NFL team who was Trump’s ambassador to the UK, along with George Glass, the US ambassador to Portugal under Trump, and Duke Buchan, his ambassador to Spain.

    Scott Bessent, a prominent Trump fundraiser who is tipped as a potential treasury secretary, is also expected to attend.

    While Trump himself is on the US presidential campaign trail, he may make a virtual appearance, or at least send a recorded video message similar to the one that was played at Farage’s 60th birthday in April.

    The event is expected to take place at a private residence in Chelsea or Knightsbridge, with about 100 people attending.

    Invites bearing a Trump logo list a number of different categories under which attenders can make donation, such as “host committee” ($100,000 a couple) and “dinner” ($50,000). A photo opportunity will cost $25,000, while simple attendance is $10,000.

    Some of the donations already raised are understood to be in excess of $100,000. Valance, who is married to the billionaire property tycoon Nick Candy, qualifies to make donations to Trump as a US green card holder.

    Valance and Candy have been publicly associated with Trump and Farage since at least April 2022, when Farage tweeted a picture of the four of them after a dinner at the former president’s Palm Beach resort, Mar-a-Lago.

    Since then, reports have gone as far as suggesting that she was under consideration as a Conservative candidate to run in the London mayoral elections, and more recently as a candidate for Farage’s Reform UK party in the general election.

    She attended the launch earlier this year of the Popular Conservatism – or “PopCon” – movement, co-founded by the former prime minister Liz Truss. The former Tory leader will not be attending the Trump fundraiser.

    Valance told GB News after the event: “I would say that everyone starts as a lefty and then wakes up at some point after you start either making money, working, trying to run a business, trying to buy a home, and then realise what crap ideas they all are, and then you go to the right.”

    Earlier this month she was among those who claimed credit for encouraging Farage to run again, saying she had been “whispering in his ear for a long, long time, saying ‘c’mon’”.

    Greg Swenson, a spokesperson for Republicans Overseas UK, a campaign group for Trump’s party, said the former president’s trial and conviction in New York had “energised” supporters in Britain and the US.

    “We’ve already noticed that people who were writing cheques for $100 are now writing for $1,000. The question is what it means for the independents and those who are undecided,” he added.

    While super-wealthy donors will be gathering for the Trump event, London-based supporters and would-be supporters of his Democratic opponent will be gathering for a £40-a-head comedy event.

    Kristin Kaplan Wolfe, the chair of Democrats Abroad UK, said: “While Republicans eat their $100,000 a couple dinner with Donald Trump Jr here in London, our UK volunteers will be helping Americans register to vote so we devour them at the ballot box in November.

    “We invite all Republicans living in the UK who can’t stomach the idea of dinner with Donald Trump Jr to join our big tent party and help defeat Donald Trump Sr at the ballot box in November.”

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