In the last months of 2017, President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign raked in nearly $7 million. But a sizable chunk of the money it spent during that time was on legal fees.
In total, the Trump campaign spent over $2.8 million on legal consulting fees in 2017, according to reports filed with the federal election commission. In the 4th quarter of 2017, the campaign spent 1.13 million on legal consulting fees, FEC records show, which amounts to approximately 40 percent of the total spending during that period.
The campaign raised over $6.9 million during the last quarter of 2017, and ended the year with over $22 million in cash on hand. According to President Trump’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump, the vast majority of contributions—98.5 percent—came from people donating $200 or less.
Legal consulting fees from October through December were paid to the law firms Belkin Burden Wenig & Goldman, LLP, Larocca Hornik Rosen Greenberg & Blaha and McDermott, Will and Emery in New York City, Counsel Press Inc. in Baltimore, Jones Day in Washington D.C., and the Trump corporation. Jones Day received the largest portion of the money—over 70 percent.
Neither the White House nor any of the law firms immediately responded to request for comment. White House Counsel Donald McGahn II is a former partner at Jones Day, and was President Trump’s lawyer during the campaign. The Washington Post reported last June that Trump’s longtime attorney Michael Cohen had retained an attorney, Stephen Ryan, from McDermott, Will and Emery for the Russia investigation. Cohen did not respond to request for comment either.
Although the spending comes as special counsel Robert Mueller continues to conduct an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, it is unclear how much of these fees actually went towards legal counsel in this investigation.