The Swampiest: More Foreign Money, Shady Deals & Legal Trouble
August 6, 2018
It is abundantly clear that Trump has broken his promise to “drain the swamp.” In fact, in just the past week alone, Trump and his family’s businesses have made the swamp even swampier. Here’s the latest:
Trump’s business continues to profit off foreign governments. A five-day stay at Trump’s New York hotel by members of the Saudi Crown Prince’s entourage significantly boosted the hotel’s bottom line.
Washington Post: “The general manager of the Trump International Hotel in Manhattan had a rare bit of good news to report to investors this spring: After two years of decline, revenue from room rentals went up 13 percent in the first three months of 2018.”
Washington Post: “What caused the uptick at President Trump’s flagship hotel in New York? One major factor: ‘a last-minute visit to New York by the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia,’ wrote general manager Prince A. Sanders in a May 15 letter, which was obtained by The Washington Post. … The previously unreported letter — describing a five-day stay in March that was enough to boost the hotel’s revenue for the entire quarter — shows how little is known about the business that the president’s company does with foreign officials. ”
Trump’s administration paid Trump’s D.C. hotel a more than $500,000 credit that experts found hard to justify.
Washington Post: “The General Services Administration granted a $534,000 rental credit to the Trump Organization’s D.C. hotel for providing ‘security, utilities and janitorial services’ to support tours of the building’s clock tower run by the National Park Service, federal officials said, an adjustment that contracting experts say illustrates the highly unusual arrangement between the company owned by President Trump and the federal government.”
Washington Post:“Leasing experts said it’s difficult to determine whether the government was justified in giving the Trumps a credit toward their rent, which according to the GSA amounted to a total of $533,996.28 for 2016 (a year when the hotel was mostly under construction) as well as all of 2017.”
Trump’s business lost its appeal of a legal dispute stemming from an attempt to increase rates by 538% at Doral resort and was ordered to pay $2 million.
Miami Herald: “A Trump-owned company that operates the president’s Trump National Doral Miami golf resort has to pay more than $2 million in legal fees stemming from a dispute over room rates — a 538 percent proposed increase — connected to a spa leasing space at the resort, an appellate court ruled Wednesday.”
Jared Kushner’s family agreed to unload its controversial Manhattan office tower in a larger-than-expected deal with undisclosed terms.
Wall Street Journal: “In a larger-than-expected deal, the New York real-estate family has agreed to lease the building to Brookfield Asset Management for 99 years, according to a Brookfield statement that confirmed earlier reporting by The Wall Street Journal. … Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.”