Donald Trump Is Shutting Down His Charitable Foundation
Trump had been accused of using it as a political slush fund.
Looks like Donald Trump may actually be keeping a promise.
NBC News is reporting that the president is dissolving the Donald J. Trump Charitable Foundation, adhering to a promise he made last December to avoid conflicts of interest.
The foundation announced its intent to dissolve and is seeking to distribute remaining funds to other charities, according to a 2016 Internal Revenue Service filing reviewed by NBC News after it was uploaded to the website of charity watchdog Guidestar.org by the foundation.
NBC News notes that Trump has not donated to the foundation since 2008.
Since that time, it has received millions of dollars from others, such as Laura Perlmutter, wife of Marvel Entertainment Chairman Isaac Perlmutter, who gave $1 million; Ivanka Trump, who donated $100,000 in 2016; and billionaire casino mogul and Trump friend Phil Ruffin, who also donated $1 million.
Other donations came from people and companies doing business with Trump or wanting something from him.
People magazine gave the foundation $150,000 in 2006, and Trump gave the magazine exclusive photos of his newborn son, Barron.
NBC Universal gave the foundation $10,000 in 2007 and $500,000 in 2012, which is when it was airing Trump’s popular reality shows, “The Apprentice” and “Celebrity Apprentice.”
Comedy Central gave the foundation $400,000 in 2011 as an appearance fee for the billionaire’s participation in “The Comedy Central Roast of Donald Trump.”
In one case, Trump reportedly spent $20,000 designated for the foundation on a 6-foot-tall portrait of himself.
The Trump Foundation came under fire last year amid claims Trump used it as a political slush fund. It also was accused of committing serious tax code violations for raising money while Trump ran for office.
Enough sketchiness surrounded the foundation that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman ordered it to cease its activities in the state in October 2016.
Schneiderman said the charity was not properly registered under state law to conduct its activities and solicit donations.
Trump Organization spokeswoman Amanda Miller told The Washington Post that the foundation is cooperating fully with Schneiderman’s office.
During the probe, the foundation can neither raise money nor give it away.