The White House has hired former Trump campaign lawyer Chad Read to represent the president against a lawsuit filed by a group of black people who say they were subjected to racial harassment at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, last month.
Read, who was also a Trump campaign staffer in 2016, is expected to be a central figure in the case, which is being brought by the National Action Network, a liberal advocacy group.
Read and his partner, Scott Baio, represent a group called Citizens for Trump.
The lawsuit alleges that a group from the city of Palm Beach “engaged in racist, discriminatory and otherwise unlawful activity against” black people, including a chant of “Trump 2016.”
Read and Baio say that the chanting was the subject of complaints from local police and the National Guard.
Read was a campaign staffer for Trump during the 2016 election and has also represented former President Barack Obama.
The suit also accuses the city and the city’s police of failing to adequately respond to the complaints.
The Palm Beach police have not responded to the lawsuit.
Read is also representing the White House on a lawsuit brought by a former employee of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, who alleges that she was forced to sign a nondisclosure agreement that prohibited her from speaking to the press.
Read said he filed the lawsuit on behalf of a woman who has been in a relationship with a member of the city council, and was fired after she complained.
The White White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the hiring of Read.
Read’s involvement comes as the White the White house is attempting to combat what it calls “fake news,” and a new White House fact-checking initiative that the Whitehouse says will help it get better at spotting “fake” news.
“This is not fake news.
This is fake news,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Thursday.
“It’s fake news, and that’s why the American people should not trust it.”
Read’s client list includes a former deputy sheriff and a member and former employee at the Palm County Sheriff.
The group alleges that the sheriff’s office subjected them to racial and anti-LGBTQ harassment, and then sent them home without providing them with food, accommodation, or medical care.
The plaintiff, who is African-American, is seeking damages for “unlawful conduct” under the federal civil rights act, defamation, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.