The City of Albuquerque has referred former president Donald Trump’s campaign to a collection agency after the campaign failed to pay approximately $200,000 following the then president’s rally in Rio Rancho in 2019.
“We actually treated it like any other debt, and so it goes through a somewhat process where you send a bunch of letters out,” Albuqerque Mayor Tim Keller said, noting that the bill covers security costs Trump incurred––including blocking off the area, paying police officers overtime, and covering paid time off for workers who had to stay home––after staying at a downtown Albuqerque hotel overnight.
“We got no response from those letters. And then automatically, it does go to an agency that helps try and collect debts, and so that’s those annoying phone calls you get that say, you know, you owe money to so-and-so like now, Trump is getting those,” he added.
The Trump campaign has a long history of not paying its bills. In November, Newsweek reported that Trump would leave office with over $850,000 in unpaid campaign rally bills. The city of El Paso, Texas, for instance, was forced to hire legal counsel after the Trump campaign failed to pay $470,000 in additional services provided by the local police and fire departments, as well as an additional $99,000 in late fees.
Keller noted that he does not expect the collection agency to succeed at getting the Trump campaign to pay the debt.
“Given what else has happened, I mean in terms of, even his own campaign owing money to donors and lots of shady stuff there, so unfortunately I don’t really expect us to get paid,” he said. “But it’s important that we do, and you know, we would do it for anyone else, so he’s no different.”