Bush Campaign's Unpaid Legal Tab from Florida Totals More Than $2 Million

Lawyers Complain of Foot Dragging,

Bush Advisers Griping about 'Astronomical' Charges



Apr 15, 2001, 01:00 ET from Newsweek

    NEW YORK, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The Bush presidential campaign has an
 estimated legal tab of more than $2 million from the post-election wrangling
 in Florida, Newsweek has learned, and an increasingly nasty dispute is brewing
 between the lawyers and their former client.  While lawyers complain privately
 about foot dragging, Bush advisers are griping about "astronomical" bills --
 including one from a litigator who charged for more than 24 hours of work in a
 single day, the April 23 issue of Newsweek reports (on newsstands Monday,
 April 16).
     (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20010415/HSSU001 )
     "What you've got here is a bunch of rich lawyers bellyaching," says one
 former Bush campaign official. "Yet these guys got huge in-kind contributions
 to their reputations out of this." The firm of Barry Richard, Bush's legal
 quarterback in Florida, is still owed more than $800,000 in legal fees. It is
 one of a dozen than have so far not received full payment.
     The lawyers were supposed to be paid from the Bush Recount Committee, a
 fund-raising vehicle set up when the Florida fight began. Its chief
 fund-raiser, Texas oilman (and now Commerce secretary), Don Evans, swiftly
 collected $8.3 million -- more than twice the $3.9 million Al Gore's recount
 committee raised to pay its lawyers. But after paying off caterers, air
 charters and the army of GOP Hill types who came to Florida as "observers,"
 the "kitty ran dry," says one source.
     The Bush camp says it intends to pay up. But Ben Ginsberg, the former
 chief campaign counsel who has inherited the mess, hasn't yet figured out how.
 
        (Story and interview attached. Read Newsweek's news releases at
               http://www.Newsweek.msnbc.com/ Click "Pressroom.")
 
 

SOURCE Newsweek
    NEW YORK, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The Bush presidential campaign has an
 estimated legal tab of more than $2 million from the post-election wrangling
 in Florida, Newsweek has learned, and an increasingly nasty dispute is brewing
 between the lawyers and their former client.  While lawyers complain privately
 about foot dragging, Bush advisers are griping about "astronomical" bills --
 including one from a litigator who charged for more than 24 hours of work in a
 single day, the April 23 issue of Newsweek reports (on newsstands Monday,
 April 16).
     (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20010415/HSSU001 )
     "What you've got here is a bunch of rich lawyers bellyaching," says one
 former Bush campaign official. "Yet these guys got huge in-kind contributions
 to their reputations out of this." The firm of Barry Richard, Bush's legal
 quarterback in Florida, is still owed more than $800,000 in legal fees. It is
 one of a dozen than have so far not received full payment.
     The lawyers were supposed to be paid from the Bush Recount Committee, a
 fund-raising vehicle set up when the Florida fight began. Its chief
 fund-raiser, Texas oilman (and now Commerce secretary), Don Evans, swiftly
 collected $8.3 million -- more than twice the $3.9 million Al Gore's recount
 committee raised to pay its lawyers. But after paying off caterers, air
 charters and the army of GOP Hill types who came to Florida as "observers,"
 the "kitty ran dry," says one source.
     The Bush camp says it intends to pay up. But Ben Ginsberg, the former
 chief campaign counsel who has inherited the mess, hasn't yet figured out how.
 
        (Story and interview attached. Read Newsweek's news releases at
               http://www.Newsweek.msnbc.com/ Click "Pressroom.")
 
 SOURCE  Newsweek