Donald Trump has a checkered history when in comes to charity. Checkered, that is, with miserliness and dishonesty. Trump gives less to charity than the average American family. I’m not talking about a percentage of income, he just flat out gives less to charity than I do with a family of five. If you recall, it was the Washington Post that reported on Trump’s lies about his philanthropy and shamed Trump into actually giving the money he’d collected for veterans’ charities to, well, veterans’ charities.
You would have thought that the whole veterans charity business would have taught Trump a valuable life lesson, but you would be wrong. Because this is Donald Trump we are talking about.
Last week he was in Louisiana to visit the areas of that state that were hit by major flooding and get photo-ops with various people and talk, deservedly, smack about Obama’s lack of interest. While there, as surely as night follows day, he had to play the role of the billionaire philanthropist and promise to make donations to various groups there. His nemesis, the Post’s David Fahrenthold couldn’t let the opportunity pass.
1.) Trump promised a $100,000 donation to Greenwell Springs Baptist Church, which lies to the northeast of Baton Rouge, in a zone affected by floods. Trump had visited the church on Friday and helped hand out supplies for a few moments as cameras rolled.
Perkins said Tuesday that Trump’s gift had not yet been paid.
“I’ve been told the church should [receive] it on Friday,” he wrote in an email to The Post. Perkins said he was unsure whether Trump planned to make the donation out of his own pocket, or perhaps from the Donald J. Trump Foundation — a nonprofit group that is largely filled with other donors’ money, not Trump’s own.
Hope Hicks, a spokeswoman for Trump’s presidential campaign, did not respond to questions about this promise.
Hahahahaha. “I’ll pay you on Friday.”
2.) Trump has also been credited — by CNN, and by his campaign’s Louisiana state director — with donating a truckload of supplies that arrived in the flood-ravaged town of St. Amant, La. But so far The Post has been unable to confirm the details of that account.
The Post sought to verify that Trump had donated the truck, asking Trump’s campaign and local officials about the gift.
Hicks, the campaign spokeswoman, did not respond to queries.
Ryan Lambert, who is Trump’s state director in Louisiana, wrote The Post a one-line email: “Mr. Trump donated the truckload of supplies.” He did not immediately respond to questions about how he knew that, or about how Trump had arranged for the donation.
But Mark Stermer, the senior pastor of the church that received the supplies, said that he met with Trump personally on the day the truck arrived — and the GOP candidate did not mention anything about donating the supplies. “I was where Trump was the whole time, and he didn’t say one way or the other,” Stermer said.
“I really don’t remember,” how people came to believe that the truck had been donated by Trump. “It was just an assumption.”
Stermer said that, in the accounts he heard, it was possible that Trump had caused the truck to be given — perhaps by inspiring another donor to give.
“I was never told he donated [the truck]. I was just told that, ‘Hey, this truck was the truck that was coming with Trump.’ So I never heard it [as] ‘donated,'” Stermer said. He said the relief effort has been busy, and left little time to account for the specifics of who gave what: “Man, it’s so chaotic over there, we were just getting trucks in and out.”
Knowing what we know about Trump, and considering the context of this being a campaign visit, does anyone think our man would have declined to take credit for a truckload of supplies he’d purchased? Me neither.
3.) It is unclear whether Trump gave a donation to the charity recommended by the governor of Louisiana prior to his visit.
Before Trump arrived in Louisiana, Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) suggested that he give a “sizable donation” to the Louisiana Flood Relief Fund, run by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation.
Did he? The foundation declined to comment.
The governor’s office said it did not know.
Hicks, Trump’s campaign spokeswoman, declined to comment.
Ummm. Well, I think the absence of knowledge and comment is a good indicator of what happened.
I’ve got no problem with Trump doing whatever he damn well pleases with his money. This is ‘Murica after all. But his constant pattern of shamming philanthropy is simply the flip side to his pathological greed. This is on the same level with Bill Clinton taking a tax deduction for his used underwear.