Search This Blog

Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Trump Notes

Michael Barbaro and Steve Eder report at The New York Times:
In blunt testimony revealed on Tuesday, former managers of Trump University, the for-profit school started by Donald J. Trump, portray it as an unscrupulous business that relied on high-pressure sales tactics, employed unqualified instructors, made deceptive claims and exploited vulnerable students willing to pay tens of thousands for Mr. Trump’s insights.
One sales manager for Trump University, Ronald Schnackenberg, recounted how he was reprimanded for not pushing a financially struggling couple hard enough to sign up for a $35,000 real estate class, despite his conclusion that it would endanger their economic future. He watched with disgust, he said, as a fellow Trump University salesman persuaded the couple to purchase the class anyway.
“I believe that Trump University was a fraudulent scheme,” Mr. Schnackenberg wrote in his testimony, “and that it preyed upon the elderly and uneducated to separate them from their money.”
Josh Marshall at TPM:
Some events are important to take note of. One of them happened on Friday when the Republican nominee for President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, again used a campaign rally to launch into a racist tirade against the federal judge presiding over two of the three fraud lawsuits against Trump's now defunct "Trump University." Federal Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel was born in 1953 in East Chicago, Indiana. He was a federal prosecutor from 1989 to 2006, primarily working in narcotics enforcement. He was a state judge from 2006 until 2012 when President Obama nominated him to serve as a Federal District Court Judge in the Southern District of California. While serving as US Attorney in 1997, Curiel was reportedly the targeted for assassination by members of the Arellano Felix drug cartel during his ultimatelysuccessful prosecution of the cartel.
Also from Marshall:
With all the ranting and noise, I want to catch us up on what we actually learned yesterday with Trump's big Vets' charities show. The big takeaway is that nothing Trump revealed changed what we knew last week: four-plus months after holding his debate-skedaddle fundraiser and announcing $6 million raised, Trump was caught in a series of lies about the money, most notably that he'd apparently tried to get away without contributing any of the $1 million he pledged after repeatedly saying he already had. (Here's a helpful timeline through May 24th, the date Trump was finally shamed into coughing up the money.)
Tina Nguyen writes at Politico:
Nobody is doubting that the presumptive Republican nominee is exceptionally well-off. Several tax experts and fellow rich people told Politico that, even in the absence of seeing his tax returns, they were willing to bet that Trump was technically a low-grade billionaire. But it’s possible, many say, that Trump pockets far less profit than his business revenues suggest. The fact that he’s sold several of his assets—including up to $7 million in fund assets and $9 million in individual securities—to cover his campaign debt suggests that he probably doesn’t have enough cash on hand to easily cover the costs of his campaign outright. That’s not something one would expect from a man who claims he is worth “in excess of TEN BILLION DOLLARS”(the capitalization is Trump’s). In addition, the real estate mogul has added over $50 million in debt to his ledger, Politico reports, putting his total debt somewhere between $315 million and $500 million, and possibly more.