Donald Trump may claim to be a billionaire on the national stage, but in private his money may be tight, as he has reportedly failed to pay some of his top advisers. A new report in Reuters suggests that the Trump campaign has actively stiffed at least 10 top staffers. The findings are based on federal campaign finance filings and are pretty damning.
The unpaid staffers include Paul Manafort, communications director Michael Caputo, California state director Tim Clark, and two other senior aides who now work for a Trump Super PAC.
Regardless of the reason, the report matters because the Trump campaign has prided itself on keeping his campaign spending low all along. Reuters points out that Trump's campaign has spent about $89.5 million, which is about a third of what Hillary's camp has reportedly spent. But if part of that rides on the backs of unpaid staffers, how can he keep saying that unless the staffers were official volunteers. That would be unusual, though not impossible.
Caputo declined Complex's request for comment, but back in June he did tell WBEN radio station he hadn't been paid for his work on the campaign, that he "isn't a rich guy," and seemingly harbored some animosity toward former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski for the slight.
"It's unprecedented for a presidential campaign to rely so heavily on volunteers for top management positions," Paul Ryan, an election lawyer with the campaign finance reform advocacy group Campaign Legal Center, told Reuters regarding the new findings.
This isn't the first time Trump has come under fire for non-payment. A viral video that made the rounds on Facebook last month touched on the time he stiffed an architect who helped him with one of his buildings. Other contractors and small business owners then came forward to say the same.