The Real Sources Of Wealth
The former president’s businesses generally fall into five categories: hotels, golf courses , condos, residential and commercial real-estate rentals, and payments for the licensing of Trump’s name.
The New York Times articles unleashed a major new source of information, besides confirming that Donald Trump’s disclosed income numbers were actually revenue figures.
The numbers also show that companies owned by Trump were incredibly unprofitable for the period between 2000 and 2018. His real sources of income were a television show and some licensing deals.
Although certain enterprises such as Trump Tower have been profitable, Trump businesses overall lost $174.5 million from 2000â2018. During the same period of time, his net income from licensing and endorsement deals was $230 million, his net income from The Apprentice television show was $197.3 million, and his income from other investments in companies run by other people was $178.7 million.
Lawsuits Around Trumps Financial And Tax Information
- On September 22, 2021, Trump commenced a lawsuit in New York state court against The New York Times, several journalists and his niece, , for a 2018 article detailing his taxes and finances, which he claims violates a 2001 settlement agreement signed by Mary. Trump is seeking at least $100 million in damages.
A Secretary Boockvar’s Guidance
On June 2, 2020, Pennsylvania held a primary electionthe first since the legislature’s adoption of “no excuse” mail-in voting under Act 77. . In anticipation of that election, Secretary Boockvar issued three sets of “guidance” to the various county election boards. This guidance purported to “define both what is required by Act 77 and what is permissible under Act 77 or some other portion of the Election Code.” . The relevant guidance provided as follows:
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B The Court’s Decision To Abstain
Upon consideration of Defendantsâ and Intervenorsâ motions to dismiss the first amended complaint, on August 23, 2020, the Court issued an opinion abstaining under R.R. Comm’n of Tex. v. Pullman Co. , 312 U.S. 496, 61 S.Ct. 643, 85 L.Ed. 971 and temporarily staying the case. .
In doing so, the Court determined that the three requisite prongs for Pullman abstention were met, and that the discretionary considerations weighed in favor of abstention. if doing so requires interpretation of âunsettled questions of state lawâ permitting resolution of the unsettled state-law questions by state courts would âobviate the need for, or substantially narrow the scope of adjudication of the constitutional claimsâ and an âerroneous construction of state law would be disruptive of important state policiesâ ” )) id. at p. 30 )].
Finally, the Court explained that, despite the imminence of the election, abstention was still proper. . The Court noted that state-court litigation was already pending that would resolve some of the statutory ambiguities at issue. . Further, the Court highlighted three courses Plaintiffs could immediately take to resolve the statutory ambiguities: intervene in the pending state-court litigation file their own state-court case or appeal this Court’s abstention decision to the Third Circuit, and then seek certification of the unsettled state-law issues in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. .
Founding And Early History
The company’s background starts with Frederick Trump and Elizabeth Christ Trump, a German immigrant couple who moved to the borough of Queens in 1906. Frederick began developing real estate there. On May 30, 1918, he died of Spanish flu in the 1918 influenza pandemic, leaving an estate valued at $31,359 .
Elizabeth carried on in the real estate business after her husband’s death. She had contractors build houses on the empty lots Frederick had owned, sold the houses, and earned income off the mortgages she provided to buyers. Her middle child, Fred Trump, entered the carpentry trade after graduating high school in 1923. Fred would later say he completed his first single-family home in 1924, but other sources date his start as a builder to 1927. In that year, Fred reached the age of majority, and “E. Trump & Son,” a name Elizabeth had used in ads since 1921, was formally incorporated.
During World War II, Trump constructed apartments and temporary housing for military personnel in Virginia and Pennsylvania. In 1944, he shifted his focus back to Brooklyn and began planning to develop large apartment buildings. He opened the 1,344-unit Shore Haven complex in 1949, followed by Beach Haven in 1950 and Trump Village in 1964.
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One Decade Of Business Dealings
A useful snapshot is Trump’s record during the 10 years before he won the presidency. From 2006â2016, The New York Times went through every business deal that the Trump Organization announced or that was reported.
The 60 deals reflected a highly uneven track record of business success: “One-third of them never got off the ground or soon petered out. Another third delivered a measure of what was promisedâbuildings were built, courses taught, a product introducedâbut they also encountered substantial problems, like lawsuits, government investigations, partnership woes, or market downturns…The remaining third, while sometimes encountering strife, generally met expectations,” according to The New York Times.
Any deeper examination of the former president’s business record would be incomplete without looking at his series of high-profile bankruptcies and other failures. Below is a list of some of the highlights, although it is by no means comprehensive.
What We Don’t Know
There are some caveats to keep in mind when assessing the data in the Trump Organization’s financial disclosure forms.
First, the data is unaudited, self-reported data, meaning that readers have to take the company’s word that it’s accurate.
Second, many of the numbers listed as “income” from certain assets seem, instead, to be the revenue from those businesses. This was confirmed when data from Trump’s tax returns were released by The New York Times showing that many of the businesses have been losing money, including some of the largest revenue producers, such as Trump National Doral golf resort.
That being the case, the financial numbers don’t show the amount of money that the former president actually took home as income. For example, in Trump’s 2017 disclosure, he listed his income for the Trump National Doral golf resort as $75 million, which matches the revenue number reported to Miami-Dade County. Net operating income for the resort for that year was dramatically smaller at $4.3 million.
Getting a clear picture of the former president’s businesses is further complicated by the fact that income and asset values are listed in very wide ranges. For example, Mar-a-Lago Club is listed as having a value of “over $50,000,000.” The Trump National Golf Club in Charlotte is listed as worth between $5 million and $25 million.
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Early Life And Business Career
Trump was the fourth of five children of Frederick Christ Trump, a successful real estate developer, and Mary MacLeod. Donalds eldest sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, eventually served as a U.S. district court judge and later as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit until her retirement in 2011. His elder brother, Frederick, Jr. , worked briefly for his fathers business before becoming an airline pilot in the 1960s. Freddys alcoholism led to his early death in 1981, at the age of 43.
Donald Trump attended New York Military Academy , a private boarding school Fordham University in the Bronx and the University of Pennsylvanias Wharton School of Finance and Commerce , where he graduated with a bachelors degree in economics. In 1968, during the Vietnam War, he secured a diagnosis of bone spurs, which qualified him for a medical exemption from the military draft . Upon his graduation Trump began working full-time for his fathers business, helping to manage its holdings of rental housing, then estimated at between 10,000 and 22,000 units. In 1974 he became president of a conglomeration of Trump-owned corporations and partnerships, which he later named the Trump Organization.
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All Named Defendants Are Necessary Parties To This Lawsuit
Many of the county boards of elections that are Defendants in this case argue that the claims against them should be dismissed because Plaintiffs did not specifically allege or prove sufficient violative facts against them. Plaintiffs argue in response that all county boards have been joined because they are necessary parties, and the Court cannot afford relief without their presence in this case. The Court agrees with Plaintiffs, and declines to dismiss the county boards from the case. They are necessary parties.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 19 states that a party is a necessary party that must be joined in the lawsuit if, “in that absence, the court cannot accord complete relief among existing parties.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 19.
Indeed, Defendantsâ own arguments suggest that they must be joined in this case. As just one example, a handful of counties assert in their summary-judgment brief that the ” Code permits Boards to exercise discretion in certain areas when administering elections, to administer the election in a manner that is both legally-compliant and meets the unique needs of each County’s citizens.” . Thus, because of each county’s discretionary authority, if county boards engage in unconstitutional conduct, the Court would not be able to remedy the violation by enjoining only Secretary Boockvar.
Thus, because the county boards are necessary parties, the Court cannot dismiss them.
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Final Thoughts On President Donald Trumps Stock Portfolio
These are stocks that President Trump held in his portfolio according to the filing in May 2016. He wont be required to submit another financial disclosure until May 2018. However, in December 2016, President Trumps spokesman, Jason Miller, said that the President has sold all of his stocks. The sale could address potential conflicts of interest in his portfolio.
Still, the list of President Trumps stock holdings shows that if you are a busy person and dont have much time to actively trade stocks, then large-cap dividend stocks could provide a convenient way to generate some passive income.
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Ii Defendants And Intervenors Are Entitled To Summary Judgment On Plaintiffs Claim That Drop Boxes Violate The Us Constitution
Plaintiffsâ drop-box claim has materially changed since the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision authorizing the use of drop boxes. Plaintiffs now allege that drop boxes effectively allow third parties to return the ballots of voters other than themselves because, they say, no one is there to stop them. Absent an in-person guard or poll worker to monitor the drop boxes and prevent the return of ballots cast in a manner contrary to what the Election Code permits, Plaintiffs assert that they face an unacceptable risk of vote dilution, which burdens their right to vote. Plaintiffs also argue that the “uneven” use of drop boxes in Pennsylvania, by some counties but not others, violates equal protection by subjecting voters in different counties to different amounts of dilutive risk, and perhaps by diluting lawful votes cast by individuals who failed to comply with the Election Code.
The Court finds that it does not. The uneven use of drop boxes across counties does not produce dilution as between voters in different counties, or between “lawful” and “unlawful” voters, and therefore does not present an equal-protection violation. But even if it did, the guidelines provided by Secretary Boockvar are rational, and weighing the relative burdens and benefits, the Commonwealth’s interests here outweigh any burden on Plaintiffsâ right to vote.
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A Plaintiffs Original Claims
On June 29, 2020, Plaintiffs filed their original complaint in this case against Defendants, who are the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the 67 county boards of elections. . With their lawsuit, Plaintiffs challenged a number of Pennsylvania’s procedures with respect to mail-in votingâin particular, the use of drop boxes and the counting of mail-in ballots that contained certain procedural defects. See . Shortly after filing their original complaint, Plaintiffs moved for expedited discovery and an expedited declaratory-judgment hearing. . Defendants opposed the motion. The Court partially granted the motion, scheduled a speedy hearing, and ordered expedited discovery before that hearing. .
After Plaintiffs filed the original complaint, many non-parties sought to intervene in the action, including several organizations. The Court granted all intervention motions. . Defendants and Intervenors moved to dismiss the original complaint. In response, Plaintiffs filed an amended complaint. . The amended complaint maintained the gist of the original, but added two new counts and made a variety of other drafting changes. See . Defendants and Intervenors moved to dismiss the first amended complaint, too, primarily asking the Court to abstain and stay the case.
Plaintiffsâ first amended complaint asserted nine separate counts, but they could be sorted into three overarching categories.
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Approval Ratings And Scholar Surveys
Trump was the only president to never reach a 50% approval rating in the Gallup poll dating to 1938. The approval ratings showed a record partisan gap: 88 percent among Republicans, 7 percent among Democrats. Until September 2020, the ratings were unusually stable, reaching a high of 49 percent and a low of 35 percent. Trump finished his term with a record-low approval rating of between 29 percent and 34 percent and a record-low average of 41 percent throughout his presidency.
In Gallups annual poll asking Americans to name the man they admire the most, Trump placed second to Obama in 2017 and 2018, tied with Obama for most admired man in 2019, and was named most admired in 2020. Since Gallup started conducting the poll in 1948, Trump is the first elected president not to be named most admired in his first year in office.
A Claims Alleging Voter Dilution Due To Unlawful Ballot Collection And Counting Procedures
The first category covers claims related to allegedly unlawful procedures implemented by some Defendants for the collection and counting of mail-in and absentee ballots. These include claims related to: Defendants uneven use of “drop boxes” and other satellite ballot-collection sites procedures for verifying the qualifications of voters applying in person for mail-in or absentee ballots and rules for counting non-compliant ballots .
In Count I, Plaintiffs allege violations of the Elections Clause and the related Presidential Electors Clause of the U.S. Constitution. . Plaintiffs assert that, under these provisions, only the state legislature may set the time, place, and manner of congressional elections and determine how the state chooses electors for the presidency. .
In support of this claim, Plaintiffs allege that Secretary Boockvar’s guidance on the use of mail-in ballot drop boxes, whether county boards of elections must independently verify in-person mail-in ballot applications, and the counting of non-compliant ballots is an executive overreach, in that the Secretary’s guidance allegedly violates certain provisions of the election code enacted by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. . Plaintiffs also claim that the Secretary’s unlawful guidance has increased the risk of fraudulent or unlawful voting and infringed on the right to vote, which, they say, amounts to additional violations of the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. .
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The Adoption Of Act 77
On October 31, 2019, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed “Act 77,” a bipartisan reform of Pennsylvania’s Election Code. See 2019 Pa. Legis. Serv. Act 2019-77 .
Among other things, by passing Act 77, Pennsylvania joined 34 other states in authorizing “no excuse” mail-in voting by all qualified electors. See 25 P.S. Â§Â§ 3150.11 – 3150.17 . Previously, a voter could only cast an “absentee” ballot if certain criteria were met, such as that the voter would be away from the election district on election day. See 1998 Pa. Legis. Serv. Act. 1998-18 , Â§ 14.
Relationship With The Press
Throughout his career, Trump has sought media attention, with a lovehate relationship with the press. Trump began promoting himself in the press in the 1970s. Fox News anchor Bret Baier and former House speaker Paul Ryan have characterized Trump as a troll who makes controversial statements to see peoples heads explode.
In the 2016 campaign, Trump benefited from a record amount of free media coverage, elevating his standing in the Republican primaries.New York Times writer Amy Chozick wrote in 2018 that Trumps media dominance, which enthralls the public and creates cant miss reality television-type coverage, was politically beneficial for him.
As a candidate and as president, Trump frequently accused the press of bias, calling it the fake news media and the enemy of the people. In 2018, journalist Lesley Stahl recounted Trumps saying he intentionally demeaned and discredited the media so when you write negative stories about me no one will believe you.
As president, Trump deployed the legal system to intimidate the press. In early 2020, the Trump campaign sued The New York Times, The Washington Post, and CNN for alleged defamation in opinion pieces about Russian election interference. Legal experts said that the lawsuits lacked merit and were not likely to succeed. By March 2021, the lawsuits against The New York Times and CNN had been dismissed.