WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's first campaign manager is joining a growing outside political effort dedicated to helping him.
Corey Lewandowski will be a senior adviser and spokesman for a super PAC called America First Action. That group and a related nonprofit aim to boost Trump's legislative agenda and the political candidates the president supports.
"Like the president, Corey has a natural understanding of the needs of the American people, and I am excited to be working with him again," Brad Parscale, another senior adviser to the super PAC and one of Trump's 2016 campaign leaders, said in the announcement.
Lewandowski led Trump's unexpectedly successful Republican primary campaign. He left the campaign after assaulting a reporter and has recently been giving speeches and trying his hand at government influence. Becoming a super PAC adviser doesn't preclude him from continuing to develop those other business interests.
Lewandowski and Trump have remained close. The two frequently talk, and Lewandowski occasionally travels with him. That close relationship could prove a challenge for maintaining the necessary legal distance between Trump's already operational re-election campaign and the super PAC.
By law, candidates — who face campaign contribution limits — may not direct the spending of outside groups that can accept unlimited amounts of money from donors. However, loopholes abound in the rules about super PACs.
One legal way that candidates and super PACs can "talk" was on display Thursday morning.
Trump tweeted that Sen. Jeff Flake, an Arizona Republican who frequently tussles with him, is "toxic." Flake faces re-election next year, and it's clear from Trump's tweets that he's not in favor of him winning the Republican primary. It would be legal for the super PAC to take that as a cue to spend money defeating Flake.