David Bossie, a conservative activist who is not a lawyer but who is nonetheless coordinating the Trump campaign’s post-election legal strategy, has tested positive for COVID-19, Bloomberg News’s Jennifer Jacobs reported on Monday. CNN confirmed the news.
A longtime ally of Trump’s, Bossie has served since 2010 as the president and chairman of Citizens United—the group whose eponymous U.S. Supreme Court victory paved the way for unlimited corporate political expenditures. He has maintained close ties to the president’s administration, though there have been some highly publicized bumps in the road.
The political veteran served as deputy campaign manager during Trump’s successful 2016 bid for the presidency, but their relationship soured last year when Bossie was accused of using his position to scam millions of dollars from the president’s elderly supporters.
The Presidential Coalition, Bossie’s non-profit group aimed at identifying and supporting conservative candidates for local and state elected office, took in $18.5 million in donations from 2017 to 2018, often using promotional materials heavily featuring Bossie and Trump, per Politico.
But in May of last year, Axios revealed that only $425,442 of the $15.4 million the group spent over the preceding two years went to potential candidates while the rest was used to pay for outside consultants and to purchase copies of Bossie’s two latest books, both of which he co-authored with Trump’s former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski. According to the report, the majority of the funds the organization has raised using a telemarketing firm previously accused of targeting the elderly and received the majority of its contributions from retirees.
A person familiar with the matter told Politico that Trump was “apoplectic” over the report, saying thought it was “the equivalent of taking from him; Trump reportedly made it clear to those around him that Bossie was to be considered “persona non grata.”
But after vehemently defending Trump in a series of appearances on Fox News and other conservative media outlets late last year, Bossie was able to earn his way back into the president’s good graces, eventually being named the co-chairman of Trump’s Maryland re-election campaign team. Bossie claimed the allegations against him were nothing more than a “left-wing smear.”
“Dave Bossie didn’t do anything wrong,” Caputo told Politico. “In reality, Bossie didn’t even do anything differently […] He was raising money the way conservatives have been fundraising for 40 years. President Trump may not like the way that works, but the president doesn’t like the way Washington works. It is what it is.”
After President Trump came down with COVID-19 in October, Bossie said that the president “learned firsthand what it’s like to be a COVID patient.” The news of the Bossie positive test comes not long after it was reported that Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson tested positive. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and several others also tested positive days ago.
Bossie got into it on Twitter with CNN anchor Jake Tapper over the weekend after Tapper reported that Bossie was telling Trump to think about conceding that he did, indeed, lose the 2020 election to Joe Biden.
“Hey Fake News guy, somebody rolled you. Shoulda reached out but wouldn’t fit your narrative,” Bossie said.
Jerry Lambe contributed to this report.
[image via Fox News screengrab]
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