As Americans are focusing on ways to lead more environmentally responsible lives, particularly by reducing plastic waste as much as possible, President Donald Trump has predictably found a way to cash in on a controversy. A recent trend sees the implementation and use of paper straws as one small way to help the environment, but Trump’s reelection campaign actually decided to capitalize on the plastic straw debate and began selling them. The campaign has now made nearly half a million dollars selling Trump emblazoned red plastic straws as their latest campaign merchandise offering.
Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale advertised the straws on Twitter just after they went on sale, saying, “Can’t wait to see the pictures of Trump supporters drinking with them.”
Almost a half million dollars in straw sales! Wow.— Brad Parscale (@parscale) July 26, 2019
Get your recyclable @realDonaldTrump straws today.
Can’t wait to see the pictures of Trump supporters drinking with them!#MakingStrawsGreatAgainhttps://t.co/2jJT3e2oJc
Parscale reportedly got the idea while on a flight to Florida, saying it came to him just as he was trying to enjoy some iced tea through a paper straw when it ripped apart. The idea that was profitable- in a recently published Politico report, the campaign admitted to having made close to $500,000 on the straws.
Parscale didn’t miss the opportunity to get in a few political jabs either, saying on Twitter, “I’m so over paper straws,” which of course, he claimed, was the undesirable outcome of “liberal progress.” He added, “This is exactly what they would do to the economy as well. Squeeze it until it doesn’t work.”
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) July 18, 2019
Fresh off his run-in with the evil paper straw and still in mid-air on the flight, Parscale went straight to his staff through an email titled “Making straws great again.” Through the email, he suggest they add plastic straws to the Trump brand and by the time plane landed, there was a full blown marketing campaign and the straws were officially being produced.
Within hours, a tweet from RNC spokesperson Elizabeth Harrington announced to the world that the straws, retailing at $15 for 10, were officially sold out. If you’re doing the math, that’s 150 times more expensive than the average straw.
Clearly the straws are reusable and recyclable, but more than that, for Trump’s campaign and his supporters, the straws are a statement against the environmentally conscience movement to end the use of plastic straws and other plastic goods that get tossed by the millions each day.
A 2017 study by the American Association for the Advancement of Science exposed the shocking truth that humans are literally filling the earth with plastic one straw at a time, using 500 million of them every day. They estimate that 8.3 billion plastic straws now fill the world’s beaches.