Friday, December 17, 2021

NEW: Longtime Arizona GOP Political Consultant Helped Hide $4.7M Worth of Kanye West's Campaign Expenditures; Scheme May Have Violated Federal Laws

Kanye West's doomed 2020 Presidential campaign spent $14.3M. Nearly $4.8M of it was run through Arizona's Fortified Consulting, which a Daily Beast report today explains how it was used to hide Republican fingerprints from Ye's "independent" campaign and how that might have violated federal law.

Fortified Consulting shares the same Tempe address as Lincoln Strategy Group, run by GOP consultant Nathan Sproul. Sproul has a long history of pushing the envelope for Republican candidates and causes. Sproul acknowledges that he set up the new company to support independent campaigns.

Today's Daily Beast article, however, suggests that the purpose was to make it harder to show that Republican operatives and attorneys around the country were behind the efforts to get West on the ballot in various states.

Federal Election Commission reports show campaign money being put into the Fortified funnel, but do not show where that $4.7M came out.

Arizona Republican attorney Tim LaSota received $10,000 directly from the campaign (he may have received more from Fortified) - he represented the West "campaign" in Arizona and acknowledged in the Daily Beast article that Republicans realized they could use it "to influence things."

Arizona law firm Fennemore Craig was also paid $37,000 directly by the campaign to represent the West electors in Arizona who were the defendants in the court challenge (which led to them being removed from the ballot).

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