How the Trump family is profiting from charities [updated]

Updated. See slow….

According to Forbes, the charity Eric Trump Foundation, brought in $1.2 million from donors in 2015, And while donors to the Eric Trump Foundation were told their money was going to help sick kids with cancer, more than $500,000 was re-donated to other charities [some not related to cancer or sick kids foundations], many of which were connected to Trump family members or interests, including at least four groups that subsequently paid to hold golf tournaments at Trump courses.

All of this seems to defy federal tax rules and state laws that ban self-dealing and misleading donors. It also raises larger questions about the Trump family dynamics and whether Eric and his brother, Don Jr., can be truly independent of their father. Foundation had no actual employees until 2015 and all board members were friends of his. In 2014, 4 left and 14 were added. Almost half had connections to the Trump Organization.

Holding an annual charity golf tournament at Mar-A-Lago saw cost balloon from $59,000 in 2012 to $230,000 in 2013 jumping to $322,000 in 2015 as Donald Trump insisted nothing is for free and charged Eric’s foundation. After calculations, no one can figure out how they were billed that much at full cost in 2015. While the event pulled in $2 million in donations, in subsequent years, it never went reached $2 million.

It seems after a “successful” charity golf tournament at Mar-A-Lago, the foundation added a few other golf events and fundraisers.

Eric Trump also used foundation money for non-foundation purposed such as a copper wine still and an antique bottle washer. The foundation used money to send it to another foundation where a painter created a portrait of Donald Trump. That portrait ended up hanging over the couch in Eric Trump’s house.

But in 2015, with other people’s’ money, a new intensive-care unit at St. Jude opened with Eric Trump’s name on it, and the foundation’s money has funded research into a rare form of cancer. Last year, the Eric Trump Foundation donated $2.9 million, according to St. Jude.

More recently, the foundation has rebranded itself as Curetivity. A spokeswoman for the organization said it would continue hosting golf tournaments to raise money for St. Jude.

[Forbes will have a detailed article at the end of the month, the Trump family and foundations declined to comment when Forbes asked.]

Updated 2017/06/10:

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is “looking into” a charitable foundation founded by Eric Trump, a spokesman for Schneiderman said, after Forbes magazine raised questions about whether Donald Trump’s son had made misleading statements about how the foundation spent its money. It was at an early stage and could not be considered a formal investigation.

One item at issue was that the Eric Trump Foundation has rebranded itself “Curetivity” and held a fundraiser under that name. But, after a query from The Washington Post morning, the attorney general’s office said the charity had not officially changed its name with New York charity regulators

Schneiderman’s office is already investigating the Donald Trump’s own name-branded foundation. Trump had used his charity’s money to settle lawsuits involving his for-profit businesses or to buy portraits of himself. That investigation is ongoing, a spokeswoman for Schneiderman said.

[Not surprising, those pro-Trump supports claimed that Forbes has no evidence. I am sure a respectable magazine like Forbes would not publish a story unless there are facts – unlike Fox News, Breitbart, etc. Changing the registration of a charity should be easy for anyone to confirm.]



Trump and immigration

Businesses run and owned by Donald Trump and his adult children have been certified to legally hire 1,371 foreign visa workers since 2001. In addition, Trump-branded real estate has raised at least $50 million in foreign investor money through a program that gives foreign investors access to green cards, according to the company that did the development of the real estate. The Trump enterprise has made use of low-skilled permits for vineyard seasonal workers, for example, and has used high-skilled visas to bring in models for its modeling agency.

Trumps’ businesses have received 283 H-1B visas since 2001. The high-skilled visas have been used for Trump’s modeling venture, Trump Model Management, Mar-A-Lago, the Trump Corporation and businesses associated with his hotels and resorts. Yes, the H-1B visa is to be used for scientists, doctors and the like – not for models, cooks and accountants [all which can be found quite easily].

Trump businesses have received 1,024 H-2B visas since 2000, according to Labor records. Those visas have gone to Mar-A-Lago, Jupiter Gold Club, Lamington Farm and the Trump National Golf Club for jobs like cooks, waiters and waitresses and housekeepers. Trump Vineyards has received 64 H-2A permits since 2006 for agricultural work.

Melania Trump is Slovenian, but began modeling in the US with H-1B visas and was given a green card in 2001, before she married Trump. Trump self-sponsored herself for residency, according to a letter by her attorney released during the campaign. She became a US citizen in 2006. [She also had some run-ins with others claiming she was an escort while at Trump Model Management.]

Trump’s first wife, Ivana, was also an immigrant, coming to the US via Canada from Czechoslovakia. Ivana became a US citizen in 1988, 11 years after she married Trump.

Trump faced a lawsuit in the 1980s that accused him and business partners of withholding wages from undocumented Polish immigrants and union workers hired by a contracting company called Kaszycki & Sons to demolish the building that would make room for Trump Tower.

A judge ruled in 1991 that Trump and his associates owed the workers more than $300,000 plus interest. The ruling was appealed, and the case was eventually settled under a sealed agreement, according to a source familiar with the proceedings.

The Washington Post reported in 2015 that it interviewed workers on the construction of Trump’s hotel in the nation’s capital who said they entered the country illegally, several of whom were still lacking authorization to live and work in the US.

Ever notice that the only Trump business that didn’t fit the same area of ownership is the Trump Model Management which would have little to do with the other businesses unless the models need a room to stay or take a vacation at Mar-A-Lago.