Donald Trump has started a legal defense fund not for himself but for witnesses in his trials and co-defendants, which appears to be an attempt to control others.
For now, the legal fund is not meant to cover Trump’s own bills, the sources said.
A Trump spokesperson provided a statement about the reasons for the defense fund.
“[A]nd to protect these innocent people from financial ruin and prevent their lives from being destroyed, a new legal defense fund will help pay for their legal fees to ensure they have representation against unlawful harassment,” the statement read.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) recently explained on MSNBC why Trump wants lawyers for witnesses, “He is going to spend whatever campaign contributions come his way to represent anyone that is deemed loyal to him. The problem with this is that we saw on the January 6th investigation how Trump appointed defense counsel for witnesses. In one case in particular was suggesting to a witness, hey you should say you don’t remember these things even if you do remember them. It allows the Trump defense team to control, them get their stories all to align, to coach witnesses, to say they forgot things that they do remember. So it’s problematic from a point of justice, point of view. I think this is what they are trying to accomplish.”
Video of Schiff:
Adam Schiff talks about why Trump wants to provide lawyers for witnesses, “It allows the Trump defense team, basically, to get their–control, them get their stories all aligned, to coach witnesses, to say that they forgot things that they do you remember.” pic.twitter.com/9y6r9t8aDJ
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) July 31, 2023
This isn’t about Trump defending the unjustly accused. It’s about Trump trying to stay out of prison by getting witnesses and co-defendants to lie for him in exchange for legal counsel. Trump’s own legal defense is costing his super PAC tens of millions of dollars per month, so it is only a matter of time until Trump starts tapping into the donated funds to pay for his own defense.
It is part of the deal that Trump makes with anyone that he ropes into his criminal activity. If they stay loyal to Trump, he protects them with legal counsel and tries to get them off of the hook.
Trump is acting like a mob boss, which is why the criminal prosecutions have to treat Trump more like organized crime than a former president.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association