Trump seeks distance from donation supporting Florida AG
- Author: Sonia Alvarado Sep 08, 2016,
Sep 08, 2016, 0:55
Bookbinder says the timing of Trump's gift was also suspicious, coming just days after a newspaper reported that Florida's Attorney General Pam Bondi's office was reviewing a lawsuit the state of NY had filed a few weeks earlier against Trump University. "I never spoke to her, first of all, she's a fine person beyond reproach", he told the Associated Press on Monday.
The contribution triggered allegations then that it steered Bondi's office away from investigating Trump University.
The IRS penalty wasn't the first time Trump was fined for his political activities. "Never spoken to her about it, never".
Trump's $25,000 donation - which his foundation failed to disclose to the IRS - came just three days after Bondi announced she was reviewing the allegations in NY.
Those words hang over Trump this week as he fields questions about a campaign contribution he made three years ago to a fundraising committee for Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi. It also flips a big narrative of the campaign: Trump has long accused Clinton of pay-to-play politics, and now he's under scrutiny for the same. "Trump-Foundation-and-Donald-J. -Trump-IRS-complaint-9-7-16.pdf">complaint alleging Donald Trump and his Trump Foundation have broken the law by giving $25,000 to a political committee backing Attorney General Pam Bondi.
The Huffington Post reported that in addition to the $25,000 contribution, the $500 Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka each donated to Bondi's campaign, and the $125,000 they gave to the Republican Party of Florida, Trump also hosted a fundraiser for Bondi in March 2014 at Mar-a-Lago, his resort in Palm Beach. "When I want something, I get it", he said at a campaign event in January.
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"And of course, as we know, there was a phone conversation between them - they contradict each other", Clinton said, adding that the "American people deserve to know" what was said in that call because "clearly" Bondi "did not proceed with the investigation". "When I need something from them, two years later, three years later, I call them, and they are there for me". The end of that story also included an excuse about Bondi trying to give the contribution back to Trump, who didn't accept the return. Both the New York Times and the Miami Herald editorial pages are calling for a deeper investigation into the controversy. "I call them. They are there for me". He says Florida was merely reviewing the NY complaint to see if it had any relevance for the state.
As Trump campaigns for the presidency, Trump University is facing litigation over allegations that its fraudulent seminars swindled and misled people in a number of states. "I give to everybody".
"Private foundations exist for the public good, that's why they're tax-exempt", CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said in a statement.
In an all-too-ironic twist, reports on the donation to Bondi arrive amidst Trump launching "pay-to-play" accusations against Hillary Clinton. But by hosting her at Mar-a-Lago and bringing in some of his own high-profile Florida contacts, he provided her campaign with a nice financial boost.
Presumably the topic of Trump's unparalleled skill at influencing politicians will be migrating from his speeches to the list of things he just won't talk about.
TRUMP: Many of the attorney generals turned that case down 'cause I'll win that case in court.