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“Reporting Nothing At All”: Donald Trump Bragged To Press He Made A Fortune In 1984, Told The IRS It Was Zero

In 1984, Donald Trump constantly bragged to the press about how much cash he was raking in. That same year, as David Cay Johnston exclusively reported in The Daily Beast, he told the IRS he had made nothing at all.

Trump deducted $626,264 as expenses on his 1984 federal income tax return, and $619,227 on his New York City return. On both forms, he claimed no income.

It was a pivotal year for the 37-year-old magnate on the make, one in which he was celebrating the opening of his seminal Trump Tower, closing a casino-hotel deal in then-booming Atlantic City and angling to topple the NFL with his ill-fated purchase of the United States Football League’s New Jersey Generals. He’d made himself a near-daily figure in New York news and gossip pages, often depicted as an egomaniacal wild man who shot from the hip and raked in the bucks as he shoved and nudged his way to the top of the real-estate world.

Young Trump wasn’t shy about talking up his income, either.

In a GQ profile that May, written by Graydon Carter, Trump plugged a hotel deal in which he partnered with Hyatt to build a new Manhattan hotel on land Trump just leased—with the help of Equitable Life Assurance Society.

“He and Equitable had split their first round of profits before any of the tenants had even moved in,” Carter wrote.

“So we have about a $277 million sellout,” says Trump, “just for the upper half of the building. And then we own the lower half for nothing.” The partnership, unencumbered by mortgages, now collects the rents from thirteen floors of office space at $50 a square foot and the six levels of retail space at $150 to $450 a square foot. “It’s a crazy deal,” says Trump. “It’s better than working.”

On top of the hotel and the football team and the constant press clips, Trump also completed an A.C. casino-hotel deal with Harrah’s that was reportedly going to bring him millions in annual income.

“Just as the name Donald Trump is well-known to most New Yorkers, the name is now becoming recognized throughout the country,” William Geist wrote in a 1984 New York Times profile. “He is fast becoming one of the nation’s wealthiest entrepreneurs, able to buy practically anything he wants. He controls a company with assets estimated—some say conservatively estimated—$1 billion, and casino-industry analysts say his half interest in Harrah’s may provide him with $40 million to $50 million more in annual income.”

Harrah’s eventually agreed to give Trump $220 million to build the project and offer him half the profits it made.

One more, remarkable source of income for Trump that year: New York Giants great Lawrence Taylor.

The linebacker had struck a secret deal with Trump, banking a million-dollar interest-free loan in exchange for agreeing to join the Generals when his contract with the Giants expired. But after the Giants extended and upgraded Taylor’s deal, he had to repay the million, the interest he’d collected on it and $750,000 more on top to the mogul to get Trump to agree to return Taylor’s option to the Giants.

Wrote the Times: “Trump, meanwhile, was described by an associate as “delighted” to have been able to keep his team’s name in the public eye while also getting a substantial profit.”

Again, this in a year where Trump appears to have claimed no income.

Trump, of course, could answer all such questions by releasing his full tax returns. Instead, he’s broken with a tradition kept to by every major party presidential candidate in modern American history and prevented the public from judging his financial circumstance for itself until an alleged audit of his taxes since 2012 is completed. Even if such an audit is in fact underway, there is no law, rule, or even tradition that would preclude him from releasing the documents.

And there’s nothing at all to stop Trump from releasing his taxes from 1980 through 2011—and clearing up the question of how he can brag about so much income while, apparently, reporting none at all.

 

By: Gideon Resnick, The Daily Beast, June 17, 2016

June 19, 2016 Posted by | Donald Trump, Internal Revenue Service, Tax Returns | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Lying About Native Americans”: ‘Pocahontas’ Isn’t The Only Native American Trump Has Offended

Donald Trump’s rumored meeting with members of the Navajo Nation during his swing through Arizona will not occur, a staffer for the nation said Friday.

And that may be just as well, given Trump’s history of disturbing and offensive statements about Native Americans.

The Associated Press previously reported that the Trump campaign had reached out to the nation for a potential meeting Saturday.

It was not meant to be.

“There was never a commitment to visit… it’s not happening,” the staffer, who asked not to be identified, told The Daily Beast.

Like on many other matters, Trump has a long track record of distasteful statements and gestures towards Native Americans. It’s another signal of why Republicans who hope he will change are likely to be left wanting. Trump’s campaign did not respond to request for comment.

Trump has raised eyebrows recently with his derisive references to Sen. Elizabeth Warren as “Pocahontas,” which many Native Americans find abhorrent. When she ran for office, Warren was criticized for identifying as a minority during her academic career, citing Native American heritage. Warren, an outspoken critic of Trump, has been unable to provide evidence of her purported Cherokee ancestry, nor could genealogists.

Trump’s hostile relationship with Native Americans appears to have begun with his involvement in the casino industry, when his gaming businesses competed with tribe-owned casinos in the 1990s and 2000s.

His competitors, unlike him, operated tax free—something he objected to strenuously.

“I think I might have more Indian blood than a lot of the so-called Indians that are trying to open up the reservations,” Trump said in June 1993, on shock jock Don Imus’s radio show.

He later questioned whether some of the people who had opened casinos which competed with his were actually of Native American heritage: “I think if you’ve ever been up there, you would truly say that these are not Indians.”

“Organized crime is rampant on Indian reservations,” Trump bellowed during testimony before Congress a few months later, according to a contemporaneous report. “It’s going to blow. It’s just a matter of time.”

In many ways, his rhetoric before that House subcommittee in 1993 mirrors that of his views on Muslims today.

Referring to crime on Native American land, Trump said he refused to be “politically correct” and added, “What is happening on the Indian reservations is known by the Indians to a large extent.

“If you knew some of the characters that you are dealing with, I think they would be afraid to do anything about [organized crime],” Trump added, implying that Native Americans didn’t have the backbone to stand up to criminals.

For good measure, he implored the overflow crowd of onlookers: “Go up to Connecticut,” he said, “and you look” at the Mashantucket Pequots.

“They don’t look like Indians to me,” he remarked, according to the Hartford Courant.

“In my 19 years I have been on this committee, I have never seen such irresponsible remarks,” shot back Rep. George Miller, a Democrat from California. “You have cast on the Indians in this country a blanket indictment that organized crime is rampant. You don’t know this; you suspect this.”

An FBI section chief who appeared at the same hearing said his office found no evidence of criminal activity in Indian gaming. And other federal law enforcement officials said they had found no evidence that organized crime had infiltrated Indian gaming operations.

In 2000 Trump and his aides acknowledged that he had been the financier behind newspaper ads railing against casino gambling in New York, as the state considered a proposed Indian casino. The businessman agreed to pay $250,000 in penalties, and was forced to issue a public apology after failing to disclose to the state lobbying commission that he had financed seven advertisements that appeared under the auspices of the plainly-named Institute for Law and Society.

“Under a dark photograph showing hypodermic needles and drug paraphernalia, the newspaper advertisement warned in dire terms that violent criminals were coming to town,” The New York Times reported.

Trump also railed against the name change to the nation’s tallest mountain: in 2015, President Obama restored the historical name of Denali to the mountain formerly referred to as Mount McKinley. Trump called it a “great insult to Ohio,” since President William McKinley had hailed from that state. Denali had been the name that Alaskan Natives had originally called it.

The Navajo Nation may have initially reasoned that a visit could temper Trump’s worst instincts. But if history is any guide, Trump will be Trump—with all the ugliness that entails.

 

By: Tim Mak, The Daily Beast, June 18, 2016

June 19, 2016 Posted by | Casino Industry, Donald Trump, Mt Denali, Native Americans | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“A Final #NeverTrump Revolution”: Could Desperate Republicans Buy Trump Out Of The Presidential Race?

On Friday we learned that, in response to Donald Trump’s presidential anti-campaign, some GOP delegates are trying to muster a final #NeverTrump revolution before he’s officially nominated at the Republican National Convention next month. Now, Politico is teasing desperate Trump-anxious Republicans even further — particularly those still in the bargaining stage of grief. Apparently a former Trump advisor told Politico reporter Ben Schreckinger that they believed Trump would drop out of the presidential race if someone slipped him $150 million. Then, another former Trump advisor, Jim Dornan, agreed that such a payoff would “probably” work, and wondered if the Koch brothers would be up for the investment. But while the idea was a big hit on Twitter, especially with #NeverTrump superfan Bill Kristol, Trump isn’t buying into the buy-out idea, telling Politico (whose reporters are already banned from Trump events) that they are a bunch of lying liars for passing along things his former advisors said:

This story is a total fabrication from you and POLITICO, as usual. I will never leave the race, nobody has enough money to pay me to leave the race, and if they did, it would be totally illegal anyway. Did Obama and the Clintons get you to write this garbage?

Then again, when a reality television star’s presidential campaign seems more like a garbage fire, or media-empire grab, than an actual, functional presidential campaign, it does kind of make sense that all sorts of outlandish speculation would emerge about that candidate’s intentions. Plus, Politico got a law professor to suggest a legal loophole:

“It’s against the law to bribe someone for a vote or certain favors, but if I say to Trump, ‘I’m starting a new hedge fund with $300 million committed to it. I’d really like you to join us. Your name will bring in billions. I’ll give you a 50 percent interest from the start, and you can cash out the value of your initial interest ($150 million) when you want,’ There’s no bribe there, and Trump could go away with the $150 million,” [Pace Law School’s Jim] Fishman wrote in an email.

Also, regarding the #NeverTrump delegate story, Trump is now calling it a hoax, though it’s a hoax that’s apparently worth engaging with if that provides an opportunity to brag:

Who are they going to pick? I beat everybody. I beat the hell out of them. And we’re going to beat Hillary. And it’d be helpful if the Republicans could help us a little bit. If they don’t want to help out as much, I’ll fund my own campaign. I’d love to do that.

 

By: Chas Danner, Daily Intelligencer, New York Magazine, June 18, 2016

June 19, 2016 Posted by | Donald Trump, Koch Brothers, Republican National Convention | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Did Sanders Wait Too Long?”: At Some Point, Sanders Can Either Get On The Train Or Get Left Behind

In a live-streamed video message to his supporters last night, Bernie Sanders laid out what he wants. It includes all of the proposals he’s been talking about, like a $15 minimum wage, stopping bad trade deals, a modern-day Glass-Steagall, breaking up the big banks, free tuition at public colleges and universal health care. There were lots of other things he listed – all of which Hillary Clinton agrees with. On these that I listed, Clinton’s proposals include the same goals – but a different approach to getting there. When it comes to where his campaign goes from here, this is what Sanders had to say:

The major political task that we face in the next five months is to make certain that Donald Trump is defeated and defeated badly. And I personally intend to begin my role in that process in a very short period of time.

But defeating Donald Trump can not be our only goal. We must continue our grassroots efforts to create the America that we know we can become. And we must take that energy into the Democratic National Convention on July 25 in Philadelphia where we will have more than 1,900 delegates.

Sanders neither congratulated Clinton on becoming the Democratic presumptive nominee, nor did he endorse her. In other words, he is holding out on such a statement in order to continue negotiations on the issues he outlined.

I look forward, in the coming weeks, to continued discussions between the two campaigns to make certain that your voices are heard and that the Democratic Party passes the most progressive platform in its history and that Democrats actually fight for that agenda.

The question becomes: did he wait until too late? What is his leverage in those negotiations? The big question leading up to this point was whether or not there would be party unity going into the convention this summer. Once Clinton overwhelmingly beat Sanders in the California and New Jersey primaries, that became less of an issue. Democrats who had waited on the sidelines – like President Obama, VP Biden and Sen. Warren – endorsed her. And those who had supported Sanders – like Sen. Merkley and Rep. Grijalva – did so as well. In the last few days, we’ve also seen Clinton endorsements from groups such as MoveOn and the AFL-CIO.

Beyond that, the specter of candidate Trump is beginning to cause talk of a landslide election in Clinton’s favor. What does she gain by embracing Sanders’ agenda in order to win his endorsement, while abandoning her own that led to a victory in the primaries?

I imagine that Clinton will be very gracious to both Sanders and his supporters. But as Sen. Warren said, she’s a fighter and has spent her whole life working on the kind of vision she has put forward during the primary. Sanders can either get on that train at some point, or get left behind.

At the end of his speech, Sanders talked about the kind of effort that is actually needed in order to transform America.

We need to start engaging at the local and state level in an unprecedented way. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers helped us make political history during the last year. These are people deeply concerned about the future of our country and their own communities. Now we need many of them to start running for school boards, city councils, county commissions, state legislatures and governorships. State and local governments make enormously important decisions and we cannot allow right-wing Republicans to increasingly control them.

It’s never too late for that!

 

By: Nancy LeTourneau, Political Animal Blog, The Washington Monthly, June 17, 2016

June 19, 2016 Posted by | Bernie Sanders, Democratic National Convention, Hillary Clinton | , , , , , | Leave a comment

“No Surprise, Trump Again Loud And Wrong”: Trump Is Woefully Ignorant About Minority Youths In America

“Ignoramus,” according to Merriam-Webster, was the name of a fictional 17th-century lawyer who regarded himself as rather shrewd when, in fact, he was quite foolish and ignorant. Enter Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee who denounced U.S. District Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel as too biased to oversee lawsuits involving Trump University because the judge was, as Trump referred to him, “a Mexican.”

Senior Judge Theodore R. Newman Jr. of the D.C. Court of Appeals, former chairman of the U.S. Fine Arts Commission Harry G. Robinson III, D.C. venture capitalist James L. Hudson, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, NBC4 news anchor Jim Vance, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights President Wade Henderson, D.C. elder statesman Carl Anderson, former D.C. mayor Adrian Fenty, D.C. Council member Brandon Todd, BET founder Robert Johnson and more than 150,000 members of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, including this lifetime member and columnist, have another name for Curiel: We call him “Brother.”

Trump, no surprise, again was loud and wrong.

Curiel was born in Indiana, where he was initiated into predominantly African American Kappa Alpha Psi at Indiana University.

Labeling — or mislabeling — is pure Trump. Why bother to get to know anything about a person when pigeonholing into an ethnic, racial, religious or sexual identity will do?

But it is not Curiel’s name, his parents’ Mexican heritage or his fraternal choice that stand out. What lifts him up, as a fraternity leader said in a tribute to him against Trump’s bigotry, is Curiel’s decision to become part of a diverse membership of high achievers from all backgrounds who firmly oppose the practice of judging someone on the basis of race or ethnic origin.

Trump, in his ignorance, would never understand. His is a world of oversimplified compartmentalization: “the Latinos,” “the Muslims,” “the gays.”

And he knows it all, especially when it comes to — his words again — “the blacks.”

In the aftermath of the Baltimore rioting over Freddie Gray’s death, Trump pronounced, “And if you look at black and African American youth, to a point where they’ve never done more poorly. There’s no spirit.”

Thus saith Trump. He saith wrong. But, in truth, Trump has had help in reaching his crooked conclusions.

The local evening news brings tales of black community breakdowns, broken bodies and so much blood. Case in point: The Post’s feature story this week about a black teen in Baltimore trying to graduate from his troubled high school when so many of his classmates are dying. It’s regular newspaper fare, and the kind of stuff trumpeted by Trump.

But The Post’s account and Trump’s portrayal don’t capture the narrative of today’s African American and other youths of color.

Those stories are found where the denigrators of black and brown youths, and many in the media, fail to go.

Trump and his ilk should have been with me last month at the Sumner School Museum for the 28th Celebration of Youth essay contest sponsored by Global Harmony Through Personal Excellence, where dozens of Grade 4 through 9 scholars demonstrated wisdom beyond their years. “No spirit”? They made you want to stand up and cheer.

Too bad Trump wasn’t around last week to see the commencement celebration of Chavez Capitol Hill High School, a public charter school of mostly black and Latino youths, most economically disadvantaged — and most college-bound.

They, too, know what life is like for The Post’s young man in Baltimore. Many of them were the first in their families to graduate high school. Life for them has been hard, too.

They are youths who care about what’s going on in their communities. More important, they believe they can make a difference. Most will be off to college in the fall. Keep that “no spirit” garbage to yourself, Trump.

If last year’s high school graduation numbers are any guide, the Chavez students will be joined by more than 3,000 other D.C. high school students who received diplomas this spring. Many of them will also continue their education. They aren’t victims. They are spirited.

Kids “have never done more poorly,” declares Trump. Tell that to the more than 600 graduates of D.C. schools who have been awarded more than $1.2 million in scholarships by Curiel’s Washington Alumni brothers and their Kappa Scholarship Endowment Fund.

Trump, the know-it-all, should have attended the 176-year-old Nineteenth Street Baptist Church last Sunday to observe the congregation honor the college and high school graduates at Youth Recognition Day. Take in the sight of their adult mentors, volunteers and financial supporters.

Those scenes at the Chavez graduation, Nineteenth Street Baptist’s service, the youth essay contest, all the fundraisers, show that family and community supporters are not isolated stories. Those experiences are replicated below the radar in black and brown communities, and in churches and mosques and places of worship across the country. They are the rest of the story.

But if Trump doesn’t know from Mexican, why should he know any of this?

 

By: Colbert I. King, Opinion Writer, The Washington Post, June 17, 2016

June 19, 2016 Posted by | Donald Trump, Gonzalo Curiel, Minorities | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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