A year and a half before the 2012 Republican national convention in Tampa, the RNC arrangements committee is turning heads for its free spending. Through September, it has managed to shell out over $636,800, more than 18 times the amount it had spent by the same point four years ago. The RNC has already had its fair share of money issues under Chairman Michael Steele and its already hefty convention bill can only cause him more problems. "I can't imagine what you'd spend $636,000 on at this point," said David Norcross, who oversaw the 2004 national conventions. "Is it possible that it's early spending that would have to take place anyway? It's possible, but I can't imagine what it would be." According to spending reports, about $67,000 of that sum has been spent on salaries, $50,000 on legal consulting, another $50,000 on equipment, $40,000 on site evaluation consulting, and some $25,000 on hotel management consulting.
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