Republican Party refusing to pay Trump's legal bills over Mar-a-Lago documents scandal: report
President of the United States Donald Trump speaking with supporters at an "An Address to Young Americans" event hosted by Students for Trump and Turning Point Action at Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo by Gage Skidmore.

ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl wrote in his post-Donald Trump administration book that on Jan. 20, as Trump was flying from the White House for the final time, he spoke to the head of the Republican Party and threatened to start his own party. RNC chair Ronna Romney McDaniel reportedly told Trump that if he started a third party that the RNC would stop paying his legal bills, which were costing the party millions.

Politico reported Tuesday, however, that that decision has ended. According to the report, any legal fees having to do with Trump's retention of government documents is not being paid by the RNC.

The report explained that Trump hired Chris Kise, a former Florida solicitor general, to represent him in the FBI search case, it was announced on Tuesday. Thus far, Trump has suffered with a legal team that is moving quickly to appear on television but not in filing a legal defense for their client.

Christina Bobb may be under her own legal problems after signing court documents saying that Trump had already turned over all of the documents. That turned out to be false.

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Thus far, the legal team has argued that Trump isn't bound by the laws about handling classified material or stealing government documents. Sources close to Trump revealed that on multiple occasions he shouted, "They're mine!" That's false. As with past presidents, the presidential library will be able to possess papers, but not until they go through the archiving process from the National Archives. The government agency manages the documents even if they're in a presidential library, they explained in a press release dispelling Trump's accusation that Barack Obama stole 30,000 documents.

Politico also reported that for his legal services, Kise will be paid by Trump, who regularly stiffs lawyers and business partners when it comes time to sign off on the bill.

"A person familiar with the matter confirmed that the Republican National Committee is not paying for Trump’s legal fees related to the FBI’s investigation and retrieval of documents at Mar-a-Lago," Politico reported. "That’s a departure of sorts from the past. The RNC has, for example, paid for Trump’s legal bills involving New York Attorney General Tish James’ investigation into the former president’s private businesses. The committee would stop paying Trump’s legal fees should he formally declare his candidacy for president in the 2024 election — a step he has hinted at but has yet to take."

In the past, Trump has said that he can't announce for president "yet" because doing so would start a lot of campaign finance things in motion. In reality, what would be set in motion is that his legal fees couldn't be covered by the RNC because he isn't the GOP nominee. Declaring also means he would no longer be able to raise money into a super PAC. He would be restricted to only raising money into a presidential campaign.

Read the full report at Politico.

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