El Paso County Judge says Trump should pay debt related to campaign rally during border visit


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – The campaign to re-elect Donald Trump for President during the last election cycle still owes a debt to the city of El Paso – the bill is $560,000.

As the former president and Texas Governor Greg Abbott ponder a location to visit along the U.S. Mexico border, El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego proposes Trump come with a check.

“That he (Abbott) helps us collect the $560,000 that Trump owes from when he was here on his campaign that would be really nice if that’s one of the things that we get,” Samaniego said. “That we have been trying to reach out to get the $560,000 from when he had his campaign here.”

Trump visited El Paso in February two years ago for a campaign stop that was rivaled by a dueling demonstration just outside the El Paso County Coliseum. The city of El Paso provided various services of security and transportation from Sun Metro for the president’s supporters as they left vehicles in distant parking lots.

The city initially charged the campaign $470,417 for the services. But after a collection fee was added to the bill, the total became $560,000. The campaign was charged $5,000 to use the Coliseum and made to pay up front.

“The Trump campaign has not submitted any payments for this debt at this time,” a city statement said. “You might recall that on Nov. 23, 2020, the City Council unanimously took action to hire the Law Offices of Snapper L. Carr to advocate in the City’s interest in the collection of the outstanding invoices.”

Invoices show the Trump campaign owes six city of El Paso departments for reimbursement of services. They are the following:

  • Department of Aviation cost, $6,286.57
  • Fire Department cost, $60,630.84
  • Health Department cost, $528
  • Streets and Maintenance Department cost, $6,452
  • Sun Metro costs, $15,577.52
  • Police Department costs, $380,942.12

Total: $470,417.05.

But a report by the Center for Public Integrity says it’s not rare for presidential campaigns to rack-up debts with local governments. Various campaigns throughout the years have left cities with bills, according to the report.

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