President elect Donald Trump has stated that he’s closing his controversial charitable foundation. The foundation has come under intense scrutiny over how it gets and uses his funds. In a statement the businessman stated “The Foundation has done enormous good works over the years in contributing millions of dollars to countless worthy groups, including supporting veterans, law enforcement officers and children”.
He also stated that he was closing the foundation due to any potential conflict of interest. He also stated that he intends to carry on his philanthropic work in other ways. Trump hasn’t stated exactly when the foundation will close, but it is believed to be in the very near future.
The foundation is under investigation by the New York Attorney general. This is due to some of the questionable practices of the way that the foundations funds have been used to settle lawsuits involving his other businesses. It’s also investigating the use of the funds to back a Republican Attorney general that was reportedly going to investigate Trump’s university. The investigation was soon dropped after then payment, though the Attorney general denies the payment swayed the decision. Trumps aides have stated that the payment was a mistake.
Trump began the foundation in 1987 with money earned from the sales of his best selling book “The art of the deal”. The funds have rapidly swelled over the years, and have as Trump states been used for much good. But controversy over payments made from the funds have far from helped Trump’s reputation as something of a controversial businessman. Trump’s closing of the foundation was almost certain to happen after the investigations were announced, and came at an awkward time for the President elect. He will now hope that these allegations disappear. Though this is far from likely as it gives his opponents significant ammunition to attack him with.
It also wears away at the reputation that Trump has tried to build for himself, during the election campaign Trump had attacked his opponent Hilary Clinton or her alleged improprieties even resorting to calling her “crooked Hilary”. He even donated $100k to the Clinton foundation that he’d much maligned during his campaign.
Opponents of Trump will be desperately hoping that his reputation takes significant harm from the allegations. Though many of those opponents had already highlighted potential impropriety by the candidate during the election, though these were drowned out successfully by his efficient campaign methods.
Joseph is a 34 year old freelance writer from London. He has a wide interest in politics and specialises in the subject. He's also a blog writer in his spare time.