September 19, 2017 7:59 pm -

Donald Trump had always been adept at The Art of the Grift – until he got into politics. The former TV star and real estate mogul is neck-deep in what will be remembered as the worst political scandal so far in American history, and that means he needs more lawyers than you’d see portrayed in a full season of The Good Wife.

That in turn means he needs money – other people’s money, preferably.

President Donald Trump is using money donated to his reelection campaign and the Republican National Committee to pay for his lawyers in the probe of alleged Russian interference in the U.S. election, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The U.S. Federal Election Commission allows the use of private campaign funds to pay legal bills arising from being a candidate or elected official.

While previous presidential campaigns have used these funds to pay for routine legal matters such as ballot access disputes and compliance requirements, Trump would be the first U.S. president in the modern campaign finance era to use such funds to cover the costs of responding to a criminal probe, said election law experts.

One person familiar with the matter said the first payments, the amount of which Reuters could not determine, has already been made and would be disclosed in public filings. The person did not explain how the costs would be allocated between the campaign and the RNC.

It won’t take long to find out how much money is involved.

The Republican National Committee is expected to make its August spending public on Wednesday, and the Trump campaign is due for another disclosure on Oct. 15.

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.