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Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Kind of Man Trump Is

David Farenthold reports at The Washington Post on Trump's claims to be an "ardent philanthropist."
It was, in large part, a facade. A months-long investigation by The Washington Post has not been able to verify many of Trump’s boasts about his philanthropy.
Instead, throughout his life in the spotlight, whether as a businessman, television star or presidential candidate, The Post found that Trump had sought credit for charity he had not given — or had claimed other people’s giving as his own.
It is impossible to know for certain what Trump has given to charity, because he has declined to release his tax returns. In all, The Post was able to identify $7.8 million in charitable giving from Trump’s own pocket since the early 1980s.
In public appearances, Trump often made it appear that he gave far more.
Trump promised to give away the proceeds of Trump University. He promised to donate the salary he earned from “The Apprentice.” He promised to give personal donations to the charities chosen by contestants on “Celebrity Apprentice.” He promised to donate $250,000 to a charity helping Israeli soldiers and veterans.
Together, those pledges would have increased Trump’s lifetime giving by millions of dollars. But The Post has been unable to verify that he followed through on any of them.
Instead, The Post found that his personal giving has almost disappeared entirely in recent years. After calling 420-plus charities with some connection to Trump, The Post found only one personal gift from Trump between 2008 and the spring of this year. That was a gift to the Police Athletic League of New York City, in 2009. It was worth less than $10,000.
At New York Magainze, Gabriel Sherman writes:
Trump got a post-convention bounce and was ahead of Clinton by a point. “What he needs to do,” Newt Gingrich told me, “is focus on the big issues.” Instead he got sidetracked on something any political operative could have told him was a losing battle: feuding with the bereaved Muslim-American parents of a soldier who had died in Iraq.
“You do know you just attacked a Gold Star family?” one adviser warned Trump.
Trump didn’t know what a Gold Star family was: “What’s that?” he asked.
SV Date reports at The Huffington Post:
Donald Trump used small donors’ money to buy nearly $300,000 worth of books from the publisher of his Art of the Deal last month, continuing a pattern of plowing campaign money back into his own businesses.
The Oct. 15 Federal Election Commission filing for Trump Make America Great Again Committee does not specify which books in particular were purchased, but the committee’s own website suggests it was Trump’s 1987 business bestseller.
“I’ve signed an out-of-print, hardcover copy of ‘The Art of the Deal’ just for you, because I want you on board with Team Trump!” Trump wrote in an Aug. 2 fundraising email, which went on to offer the book for a minimum donation of $184.
Trump’s statement calling the book “out-of-print,” repeated on the committee’s website, however, is false. The Art of the Deal had a new paperback edition printed last October, and the hardcover is currently in print and available from Random House and retail booksellers. Barnes and Noble, for example, sells it for $22.35.