As POLITICO reports, there's no doubt that Michael Avenatti is "testing the waters" of a presidential campaign. Is he complying with the legal requirement that he use money raised under the $2700 candidate contribution limit to pay for these activities? It doesn't look like it--he's recently set up a multicandidate PAC that's accepting $5,000 contributions.
Michael Avenatti has assembled a team of Democratic political veterans who are helping him coordinate meetings with donors, connect with national and state party officials, craft messaging and build out a digital fundraising apparatus designed to enable a 2020 presidential bid.
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Two sources close to the Avenatti operation confirmed that John Robinson, who worked as a chief operating officer for Bernie Sanders‘ 2016 campaign and has worked with former presidential candidates John Edwards and Al Gore, has informally advised Avenatti for about two months. If Avenatti runs, he is likely to tap Robinson as his own operations chief, the sources said.