Feb 1, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Trump campaign donors footed the bill for more than $50M in legal fees last year

Donald Trump sits at a table in a courtroom with his lawyers

Former President Donald Trump and his lawyers Christopher Kise and Alina Habba attend the closing arguments in the Trump Organization civil fraud trial at New York State Supreme Court on Jan. 11, 2024. Photo: Shannon Stapleton-Pool/Getty Images

Former President Trump's political fundraising apparatus spent more than $50 million on legal costs last year as he faced a barrage of lawsuits and criminal charges in multiple jurisdictions.

Why it matters: The stunning new campaign finance reports reveal the financial damage the GOP presidential frontrunner has sustained while facing a colliding campaign and courtroom calendar.

  • The mounting legal costs have drained large sums from Trump's campaign coffers as he gears up for what's expected to be another tight race against President Biden.
  • Overall, Trump's fundraising brought in less than his campaign spent in 2023, Politico reported.

By the numbers: Trump's Save America PAC spent roughly $47 million on legal consulting last year, according to the group's latest financial report.

  • That includes $25 million in the last six months of the year, the Federal Election Commission data shows.
  • The PAC listed payments to an array of lawyers and firms, including Alina Habba, who has represented him in the E. Jean Carroll defamation case and New York civil fraud trial.
  • Todd Blanche and John Lauro, who have represented Trump in criminal cases, are also listed.

Another Trump-affiliated group, the Make American Great Again PAC, spent roughly $4 million on legal services over the same six-month period.

Zoom out: Trump faces dozens of criminal charges at both the state and federal level, with two trials scheduled to start in March.

  • In Georgia, he's a defendant in a sprawling racketeering case related to the 2020 election.
  • At the federal level, he's been charged in two cases led by special counsel Jack Smith.
  • The former president also faces charges in Manhattan over a 2016 hush money scheme.
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