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Mitt Romney kicks in $10k for McDonnell defense

Daily Press

Former GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney donated $10,000 recently to the Restoration Fund, the group raising money to help pay former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's legal bills.

Fund organizer Jason Miyares, a Virginia Beach attorney, confirmed the donation, which was first reported this afternoon by The Washington Post.

"We are incredibly grateful for governor Romney's support and the donation," Miyares said.

Miyares said the group has raised "low six figures" so far for the McDonnells, who face federal charges over the gift scandal that marred the last year of the McDonnell administration. He said he didn't have exact numbers handy Tuesday afternoon.

The McDonnell's legal bills will almost certainly mount far beyond that, but it would seem donations are picking up for the group, which had put together about $12,000 as of the end of last year.

"I think people have been incredibly gracious. I think they've seen that this is a prosecution that is fundamentally political in nature."

The Romney donation could help the group's visibility, and unleash more donations. McDonnell was a big Romney supporter, and once considered a possible vice presidential nominee.

News of the donation is making its way around the Internet. Already USA Today and CBS have picked up on The Post's initial blog post.

UPDATE: Not long after I wrote this, VPAP updated it's database, showing Restoration Fund raising more than $152,000 so far. The money's gone out nearly as fast as it's come in, though: They had less than $9,000 on hand as of March 31.

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