Speed Reads

not a good look

Trump hosted pricey fundraiser for Florida attorney general after she dropped Trump U suit

Donald Trump has raised concerns about Hillary Clinton's alleged participation in pay-to-play schemes, but his own suspiciously timed campaign donation to the Florida attorney general has some questioning if it is possible Trump himself or the attorney general broke bribery law. Now The Huffington Post reports that in addition to Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi deciding against joining a New York State lawsuit against Trump University after reportedly "personally solicit[ing]" a $25,000 campaign donation, Trump shortly thereafter loaned out his Mar-a-Lago resort for a $3,000-per-person fundraiser for Bondi:

All this money created the appearance that Donald Trump was thanking Bondi for halting any further investigation into his failed seminar programs. Trump's efforts to boost her politically came during and after a period when Bondi was under pressure to pursue allegations that those seminars were defrauding consumers.

The use of Mar-a-Lago alone was a donation of some value. Space at the resort is expensive to rent, and Trump has charged his own presidential campaign roughly $140,000 per event for use of the mansion.

In contrast, the Republican Party of Florida paid only $4,855.65 for the Bondi fundraiser, cutting a check on March 25, 2014. [The Huffington Post]

"All we had to do is stroke a check to the committee to re-elect [the state attorney general] and all the problems went away," one anonymous individual who was formerly employed by Trump University told The Huffington Post. Trump, for his part, has said he only supported Bondi politically.

Still, one former Trump University student, Kenneth Lafrate, who had complained to the Florida office also called the familiarity between Trump and Bondi concerning. "She's not going to do anything because she's kind of in with [Trump]," he recalled thinking. Read more about the allegations leveled at Trump and Bondi over Mar-a-Lago and more at The Huffington Post and The New York Times.