Missouri AG Schmitt’s office reverses story, says campaign paid for Texas trip, not state

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Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt’s office said Sunday that Schmitt’s Senate campaign paid for his travel to Texas this week to announce a lawsuit about the border wall, revising an earlier statement that taxpayers had footed the bill.

The office said the state did pay for Chris Nuelle, Schmitt’s official spokesman, to take the trip to the U.S.-Mexico border. It cost about $820, Nuelle said Sunday.

Nuelle said the discrepancy between this statement and the earlier one was a “miscommunication.”

On Friday, he defended the state-paid trip as one made in Missourians’ interests. He and Schmitt were at the U.S.-Mexico border to announce the attorney general’s filing of a federal lawsuit in Texas seeking to force President Joe Biden to resume construction of the wall.

““The trip was paid for by the State, because it was a lawsuit filed by the State of Missouri on behalf of the people of Missouri,” he said then, adding that he made efforts to book inexpensive accommodations. “Securing the border has far reaching national security implications, including in Missouri, and the focus should be on Joe Biden’s failure to secure the border.”

Schmitt joined Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in El Paso on Thursday for the announcement. Schmitt, who is running for U.S. Senate, has filed or signed onto a series of lawsuits that associate him with the agenda of former President Donald Trump.

He has worked closely with Paxton, who led the baseless lawsuit seeking to overturn the 2020 election. Thursday’s filing follows a previous lawsuit from Schmitt and Paxton that forced the Biden administration to reinstate the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” policy for asylum seekers.

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