Former President Donald Trump’s legal fees are skyrocketing, and have already surpassed $40m as he awaits indictment on a host of charges related to the January 6 attack and his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
The Washington Post reported the staggering total cost of the president’s legal expenditures on Saturday, citing numerous sources within Trumpworld. The mounting costs are only likely to grow more burdensome after Department of Justice special counsel Jack Smith hands down an indictment in the coming days charging Mr Trump for crimes allegedly committed while he served as president.
And then there’s Georgia: the former president and members of his legal team are expected to face potential charges as a result of Fulton County prosecutors’ investigation into their efforts to change the election results in that state too. A decision in that matter is expected later this month.
Mr Trump’s Save America PAC, his primary vessel for outside spending, is expected to verify this total in a campaign finance filing on Monday, according to the Post. The Trump campaign has been reported in recent months to have begun funneling a greater share of donations directly to the PAC as his legal expenses mount. Complicating the issue: Mr Trump is apparently paying legal fees for a number of those within his inner circle who have been drawn into the investigation — which itself has become an issue that prosecutors are examining.
A spokesman for the former president confirmed this, stating only that Mr Trump was paying for legal representation for potential witnesses in the cases against him “to protect these innocent people from financial ruin and prevent their lives from being completely destroyed” by a supposedly “unlawful harassment” campaign led by the DoJ.
The Post’s scoop drew ire on Twitter from Trump loyalists, who decried the ongoing and growing prosecution of the former president as a politicised witch hunt.
One of those loyalists was Senator JD Vance, who won a hard-fought election last year with close support from the former president throughout his primary and general election campaigns.
“The “Trump paid $40m in legal fees” attack is so lame. I have good friends who did nothing wrong who had their legal fees paid by Save America PAC. Would you rather they throw all of their employees under a bus?” tweeted Mr Vance on Saturday.
“The real story is that our system has become so corrupted that it costs millions of dollars to fight ir [sic],” he continued. “Anyone who thinks they wouldn’t do this to [GOP primary candidates Ron] Desantis, or [Tim] Scott, or anyone else, is kidding themselves.”
The real story is that our system has become so corrupted that it costs millions of dollars to fight ir. Anyone who thinks they wouldn’t do this to Desantis, or Scott, or anyone else, is kidding themselves.
— J.D. Vance (@JDVance1) July 30, 2023