Who is paying for Trump's legal fees in the Russia probe?

TOPSHOT - US President Donald Trump waits for a dinner with Latin American and US leaders at the Palace Hotel during the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly September 18, 2017 in New York City. /

Brendan Smialowski / AFP/Getty Images

President Trump appears to be letting other organizations pick up the tab for legal fees related to his presidency, according to two reports released on Tuesday.

CNN and Reuters on Tuesday reported the RNC spent more than $230,000 in August to cover some of the president's legal fees related to the federal investigation into Russian election meddling and any ties to Trump associates in the 2016 election. CNN, citing an RNC official, said the RNC's legal defense fund, not its political accounts, covered the expenses. The RNC's payments are expected to be included in a finance report to be released Wednesday. 

But the RNC wouldn't be the only organization to cover Mr. Trump's mounting legal bills, as special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation continues to plague the White House. Mr. Trump's reelection campaign has shelled out more than $921,000 for "legal consulting" since February, according to FEC filings CBS News reviewed, although the records don't go into further detail about the nature of the payments. Those transactions do not necessarily cover the Russia probe. The bulk of the payments are to the law firm Jones Day, a favored firm for the Trump administration. 

Nearly $90,000 of funding to cover the legal fees went to the Trump Corporation. Some of that total sum also includes $50,000 to the Offices of Alan S. Futerfas, the firm representing Donald Trump Jr., Mr. Trump's eldest son.

Mr. Trump's reelection campaign paid the law firm 11 days before the New York Times reported the eldest Trump son arranged a June 2016 meeting with a Russian-connected lawyer. Trump Jr. released emails showing he was told he could be offered information damaging to Hillary Clinton as a "part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump." Responding to the proposition, the eldest Trump son said, "I love it."

The FEC's records only cover through the end of June, the most recent filing period. 

  • Kathryn Watson

    Kathryn Watson is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.