Trump quietly builds a data juggernaut

But the very existence of the Trump data program undermines the assumption that his campaign is uninterested in ― or unaware of ― the basic technological infrastructure needed to identify and mobilize voters. Such tools, used so effectively by Barack Obama during his two presidential campaigns, could be especially critical for Trump as he seeks to increase turnout among new or untraditional GOP voters.

In October, as it became apparent that the real estate showman’s position atop GOP primary polls was more than a short-lived fluke, his campaign sought proposals from multiple companies that provide data and modeling to help candidates identify persuadable voters and mobilize core supporters, including the nonpartisan political data firms L2 and rVotes, according to sources. They said the campaign ultimately entered into an agreement with L2, which worked with Braynard and Chrabaszcz to tailor data for the campaign’s use.

“It was a sizable purchase of data,” said L2 president Bruce Willsie, who declined to give a specific price tag. The Bellevue, Washington-based firm provides data on registered voters and also nonregistered adults like the ones Trump’s campaign hopes to register and mobilize. And Willsie said L2’s work with Trump’s campaign is ongoing. “We continue to provide services to the Trump campaign, and the data package is a major part of that,” he said, though he referred further queries to the Trump campaign.