Trump Is Always Bragging About Giving To Charity, But This Shocking Report Exposes The Truth
Trump Says He Gives Millions To Charity. Does He Really?
Donald Trump loves to brag about how much he gives to charity. If he honored all his pledges to give to charity over the last 15 years, he would have donated at least $8.5 million to various charities, according to a new report published Tuesday by the Washington Post.
The report investigates his claims versus the reality of his giving and discovers that, in the past 15 years, prior to a recent donation of $1 million to veterans’ groups, public records show he had donated only $2.8 million. Most of those donations were prior to 7 years ago. The last public record of Trump giving anything to his foundation, which handles his donations, was in 2008. The Post contacted 167 charities with a connection to Trump. The last donation from Trump to any charity was in 2009, “a gift of between $5,000 and $9,999 to the Police Athletic League of New York City.”
Trump is one of the only so-called billionaires in America who has not actually proven that he is a billionaire. But among the ranks of the super wealthy, Trump publicly brags about his donations to charity more than almost any other billionaire. And he gives far, far less than most other billionaires. His claims and the reality of his giving, at least according to public records, are radically at odds. According to The Smoking Gun, he may be the least charitable billionaire.
The Washington Post‘s report alleges that Trump has misled investors in his sales projects over the years, telling them that proceeds would go to charity, and then, according to public records, apparently not donating to charity. The Post gives several examples of this. The Republican presidential candidate slapped his name on a Monopoly-like board game called “Trump, the Game,” with the promise that proceeds would go to charity. The Post reports,
But the proceeds didn’t go straight to charity. They went straight into Trump’s bank account.
“Are you asking me whether or not I took the check . . . and endorsed it over to a charity?” Trump said on the witness stand in a 1991 New York State court case, brought by a man who accused him of stealing the idea for “Trump, the Game.” “Who would ever do that?”
This shows that the Republican presidential candidate not only didn’t give the proceeds to charity as he promised he would, but he mocked a plaintiff suing him for intellectual theft for believing that he would follow through on his promise.
Despite the thunderous absence of evidence that he donates anywhere near what he claims to donate to charity, Trump and his staff claim that he donates anonymously and privately.
On June 19th, Buzzfeed published a report that cataloged Trump’s statements claiming to giving millions in donations, going back to the 1980s. They also couldn’t reconcile his statements with reality. Buzzfeed reached out to the Trump campaign,
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In response to BuzzFeed News’s request for comment, Hicks, the press secretary for the Trump campaign, sent the following statement: “Your information is totally incorrect — he makes contributions personally and there’s no way for you to know or understand what those gifts are or when they are made. We appreciate your interest in his charitable giving, which is generous and frequent.”
The Trump campaign’s official defense of his charitable giving is essentially, “Take my word for it.” That is quite difficult to believe, coming from a man whose main product is his own brand name, and whose main skill is self-promotion. Everything we know about him suggests Trump would make a huge a donation as splashy as possible. In fact, evidence suggests that he has bragged at length about donations that he did not actually make.
The Washington Post needs to be commended for its aggressive investigative journalism over the last few months, specifically on the question of how Trump’s rhetoric about his donations matches reality. The Post broke the story of Trump failing to follow through on a promise to donate to veterans. The story shamed the presumptive Republican presidential nominee into forking over $1 million to veterans, after he had falsely claimed that he donated to veterans’ groups. That $1 million donation raised his charitable giving over the last 15 years from $2.8 million to $3.8 million, according to the publicly available information obtained by the Post.
Photo by Matthew Busch/Getty Images
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Marc Belisle is the Reverb Press World Affairs Editor. He is a writer, activist and teacher. He has a Master’s degree in International Conflict Analysis from the Brussels School of International Studies. READ MORE BY MARC.