When Donald Trump chose Orlando, Florida for the kickoff of his 2020 campaign, the city demanded up-front payment of the costs it would incur.
They were smart.
Because this President doesn’t pay his bills–never has. According to multiple media reports, 10 cities are still waiting for Trump’s campaign to pay $841,000 in bills from previous rallies. Some of those bills go back to 2016.
Ironically, Trump often gushes at rallies about police officers and other brave first responders, but his campaign is apparently stiffing police and firefighters across the nation.
“Do we love law enforcement or what?” he asked at a rally in Lebanon, Pennsylvania, in October. Apparently, his campaign didn’t love them enough to even bother to respond to a $16,191 bill for city police and other safety costs, according to the report by the nonprofit CPI in conjunction with NBC and CNBC.
President Trump’s speech at the Lincoln Memorial on the Fourth of July is expected to drive up security costs for an annual event that draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to the nation’s capital.
But the president has still not fully paid the bill for the last time he addressed a massive crowd on the Mall: his 2017 inauguration.
The Trump administration and Congress owe D.C. more than $7 million in expenses from Trump’s inauguration, according to federal and city financial records. The total cost of the four-day celebration, which culminated with a parade and gathering of roughly 600,000 people on the Mall, was $27.3 million.
As a result, the District has been forced to dip into a special fund that covers annual security costs for protecting the city from terrorist threats and hosting other events such as demonstrations, state funerals and the visits of foreign dignitaries. That fund, which for years was adequately replenished by federal dollars, is now on track to enter the red by this fall, records show.
As the article noted (in what may have been a subtle dig), the expenses of the inauguration were “formidable despite the fact that attendance was far more sparse than at Obama’s Inauguration.”
It’s no secret that Trump has been a deadbeat throughout his career. I remember television interviews during the 2016 campaign with vendors he’d stiffed over the years, and reports of the numerous times he’d been sued. (As I recall, the number of lawsuits was in the thousands.)
Evidently, the D.C. liquor board understands that business history. According to The Washington Examiner, a group of Washington, D.C., residents are being permitted to challenge the Trump Hotel’s liquor license on the basis of President Trump’s character. The group is asking to have the hotel’s liquor license revoked, citing a D.C. law that requires license applicants to be of “good character and generally fit for the responsibilities of licensure.”
“Donald Trump, the true and actual owner of the Trump International Hotel, is not a person of good character,” the residents wrote in their complaint, because of “certain lies he has told, his involvement in relevant fraudulent and other activity demonstrating his lack of integrity, and his refusal to abide by the law or to stop associating with known criminals.”
Instead of denying the complaint, the board issued a ruling allowing for the complaint to move to mediation or a hearing before the board.
There’s so much more the group can point to. The multiple bankruptcies. The fraud that was Trump University (he settled those claims for 25 million). The unwillingness of American banks to do business with him and his subsequent coziness with–and dependence on– Russian oligarchs. His use of the office of President to line his and his children’s pockets, arguably in violation of the Constitution’s emoluments clause. Etc.
Some “businessman.” No wonder he doesn’t want to disclose his tax records; according to knowledgable observers, they will show (among other things) that he has grossly inflated his net worth.
It all begs the question: how did this crude and classless deadbeat come to occupy the Oval Office? And is there anything–other than White Nationalism, fragile masculinity and misogyny–that can explain why anyone would still support him?