Following the discovery that the Donald J. Trump Foundation was never certified as a charity or legally allowed to accept tax-free donations, the New York Attorney General has issued a cease-and-desist order to the “charity foundation,” banning it from soliciting donations within the state of New York.
The office of New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman has issued a “notice of violation” to Donald J. Trump’s foundation, ordering it to immediately stop soliciting charitable donations in New York.
The letter, which was sent on Friday and released on Monday morning byMr. Schneiderman’s office, said its charities bureau had determined that the Donald J. Trump Foundation had been fund-raising in New York this year when it was not registered to do so under state law.
“The Trump Foundation must immediately cease soliciting contributions or engaging in any other fund-raising activities in New York,” wrote James Sheehan, the chief of the charities bureau.
Trump’s Foundation has never operated like a traditional charity. Instead, it’s been woven into the network of shady business practices that Trump uses to funnel money into his pockets while pretending to be a philanthropist.
Trump’s last gift to his own charity foundation was in 2008 – all the rest of the money comes from other sources, which Trump then uses to give to other charities, creating the impression that he is a generous man. Sometimes, however, Trump has straight-up used donation money to buy himself personal gifts, the most flagrant of which was reportedly a $20,000 six-foot painting of himself. The Washington Post contacted over 250 charities in attempts to track down Trump’s “donations” – but were largely unsuccessful. Many of the charities that Trump told the IRS he had donated to had no idea that he had promised them money.
Trump has also been using his tax-exempt charitable foundation as a vehicle for tax evasion by having companies that owe his money funnel it through the Foundation, allowing him to dodge the taxes on nearly $2.3 million in income.
Every single part of the Trump “empire” is tainted with his corrupting touch. It is all a giant scheme to fill his pockets and to plaster his image across the world, an intricately constructed but ultimately ersatz image of a successful businessman and philanthropist.
On top of all this, somehow Trump has the nerve to attack the Clinton Foundation, which has helped improve the lives of over 400 million people around the world. He is a disgusting hypocrite of the worst kind. He is a cartoonish villain; at this point it could be revealed his Chinese ties are made by children in a sweatshop and it wouldn’t be surprising. How many more times can we tell the American people he’s is utterly unqualified to be dogcatcher, let alone President of the United States?
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.