Fahrenthold is at it again. Tuesday morning he published a bombshell in the Washington Post that shows that Donald Trump used over a quarter-million dollars from his foundation to settle lawsuits for his for-profit businesses. This appears to violate laws against self-dealing.
Here’s the bombshell, “Donald Trump spent more than a quarter-million dollars from his charitable foundation to settle lawsuits that involved the billionaire’s for-profit businesses, according to interviews and a review of legal documents.”
Trump is really good at using other people’s money to benefit himself and then taking credit for his generosity. As an example, when his Mar-a-Lago Club faced $120,000 in unpaid fines, “Palm Beach agreed to waive those fines — if Trump’s club made a $100,000 donation to a specific charity for veterans.” Trump did this again with another lawsuit, giving a $158,000.00 donation from the foundation to a charity in order to settle yet another lawsuit.
So, Donald Trump used other people’s money to pay off fines via a charitable donation from his foundation. This is the kind of thing you would not do if you were serious about running for president and thus knew that perhaps your financial records would face scrutiny, as all candidate’s do — well, except for Donald Trump who has refused to release his tax returns.
All we know about Donald Trump’s taxes is that he didn’t pay any in the only year we know about his tax returns based on a 1981 report. Yes, that’s right, Donald Trump paid zero dollars in taxes.
Trump also used the money to buy yet another portrait of himself (seriously?) and to buy advertisements for his hotels. If you had given money to the Trump Foundation for charity, you might be a little ticked off to see Trump using it to buy himself out of lawsuits, buy a portrait of himself and buy ads for his for-profit business.
The four cases of Trump using the foundation to self-deal total $258,000. Fahrenthold writes, “Trump may have violated laws against ‘self-dealing’ — which prohibit nonprofit leaders from using charity money to benefit themselves or their businesses.”
This is yet another case of Donald Trump’s corruption and lack of ethics, as he points to the Clinton Foundation, which is actually saving lives around the world. These two scandals are nothing alike because there is no Clinton Foundation scandal. But there are many Trump Foundation scandals.
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.