Monday, October 10, 2016

Trump's many scandals: The crook in the campaign is not Hillary

No matter what happens in any debate, the public record shows Trump to be plagued by many scandals, 20 including the current flap over his lewd remarks about women. The Atlantic provides this cheat sheet. Whatever "dirt" is dug up on Clinton is not even close to Trump's record.

Here's the list:

The Beauty Pageant Scandals Where and when: Various, 1992-present

Racial Housing Discrimination Where and when: New York City, 1973-1975

Mafia Ties Where and when: New York and Atlantic City, 1970s- ?

Trump University Where and when: 2005-2010, online

Tenant Intimidation Where and when: New York City, 1982-1986

The Four Bankruptcies Where and when: 1991, 1992, 2004, 2009

The Undocumented Polish Workers Where and when: New York City, 1980

Alleged Marital Rape Where and when: New York City, 1989

Breaking Casino Rules Where and when: New York and New Jersey, various

Antitrust Violations Where and when: New Jersey, 1986

Condo Hotel Shenanigans Where and when: New York, Florida, Mexico, mid-2000s

Corey Lewandowski Where and when: Jupiter, Florida, 2016

Suing Journalist Tim O’Brien for Libel Where and when: New York City, 2006-2009

Refusing to Pay Workers and Contractors. Where and when: various, 1980s-present

Trump Institute Where and when: Boca Raton and elsewhere, 2005-?

Buying Up His Own Books Where and when: various, 2016

Undocumented Models Where and when: New York, 1999-?

The Trump Foundation Where and when: Various, 1988-present

The Cuban Embargo Where and when: Cuba, 1998-present


The Access Hollywood Tape Scandal Where and when: 2005-present

The Atlantic report follows each of these list items with "The Dirt" and "The upshot" containing details of the allegations and charges and the outcome, if any. Here are two of my faves to give you a sense of the reporting.

Refusing to Pay Workers and Contractors

Where and when: various, 1980s-present

The dirt: Contractors, waiters, dishwashers, and plumbers who have worked at Trump projects say that his company stiffed them for work, refusing to pay for services rendered. USA Today did a lengthy review, finding that some of those contracts were for hundreds of thousands of dollars, many owed to small businesses that failed or struggled to continue because of unpaid bills. (Trump was also found to have improperly withheld compensation in the undocumented Polish worker controversy.)

The upshot: Trump has offered various excuses, including shoddy workmanship, but the scale of the problem—hundreds of allegations—makes that hard to credit. In some cases, even the lawyers Trump has hired to defend him have sued him for failing to pony up their fees. In one lawsuit, a Trump employee admitted in court that a painter was stiffed because managers determined they had “already paid enough.” The cases are damaging because they show Trump not driving a hard bargain with other businesses, but harming ordinary, hard-working Americans.

Buying Up His Own Books

Where and when: various, 2016

The dirt: The Daily Beast noticed in FEC filings that the Trump campaign spent more than $55,000 buying his own book Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again. (The book has since been retitled Great Again: How to Fix Our Crippled America for the paperback edition.) That means Trump used donor money to his campaign to buy a book, sending the cash back to himself. Copies were given to delegates at the Republican National Convention.

The upshot: The maneuver could break FEC rules, campaign expert Paul S. Ryan told the Beast: “It’s fine for a candidate’s book to be purchased by his committee, but it’s impermissible to receive royalties from the publisher... There’s a well established precedent from the FEC that funds from the campaign account can’t end up in your own pocket.” The Huffington Post also noticed that Trump jacked up rent for campaign offices when he stopped funding his own campaign.

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