New York Times Report Reveals Donald Trump's Father Was the Real Baller, Not Him

Photo: Chip Somodevilla (Getty Images)

It turns out that Donald Trump is huckster, liar and a fraud. Who knew?

According to a scathing report in the New York Times, the president of the United States not only lied about his wealth (he continuously claims that he’s a billionaire and he’s not), but his family defrauded the IRS by using dubious tactics to pass wealth around like the building fund money bucket at Greater Tabernacle Apostolic Church of Yeezus Christ. The 18-month investigative piece also claims that the Trump family lied about the amount of wealth they inherited and defrauded the IRS out of millions in taxes.


“In all, the president’s parents transferred well over $1 billion in wealth to their children, which could have produced a tax bill of at least $550 million under the 55 percent tax rate on gifts and inheritances that was in place at the time. Helped by a variety of tax dodges, the Trumps paid $52.2 million, or about 5 percent, tax returns show,” the Times reported.

The in-depth investigation into the Trump family’s financial records (also, let’s remember that Donald Trump won’t show his tax returns), proved that Trump’s claims that he’s a self-made financial wizard proved that was a lie.

The Times report “revealed that Donald Trump received the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s real estate empire. What’s more, much of this money came to Mr. Trump through dubious tax schemes he participated in during the 1990s, including instances of outright fraud.”

What the Times story confirmed is that biggest and wisest investment Trump ever made was devoting his energy and money into the myth that he’s a self-made wealthy man.


The Times story not only confirmed the long-held leftist theory that the president is full of shit, it backed up with facts. Maybe you’ve heard the story of the Cheezit-colored man who was given a $1 million loan from his rich papa, Fred Trump, and was forced to pay that back with interest. It’s a story Trump tells all the time and a story that the Times found to be false.

In Mr. Trump’s books and TV shows and on the campaign trail, a central trope of his self-mythology has been that, as he began building his own empire, the only financial help he got from his father was a $1 million loan. Not only that: “I had to pay him back with interest.”

In fact, The Times found, Fred Trump lent his son at least $60.7 million, or $140 million in today’s dollars. Much of it was never repaid, records show.


The Times exposé also found that Donald Trump’s self-made claims are just bullshit, but thanks to tax dodging and the ole rich white man sleight of hand, Trump has been a millionaire since he was 8.

The Times’s investigation makes clear that in every era of Mr. Trump’s life, his finances were deeply entwined with, and dependent on, his father’s wealth. By age 3, he was earning $200,000 a year in today’s dollars from his father’s empire. He was a millionaire by age 8. In his 40s and 50s, he was receiving more than $5 million a year.


And how did Trump continue to maintain wealth after making one bad investment after another?

His father.

After Trump lost a shitload of money in Atlantic City, N.J., casinos, Trump Shuttle and the Plaza Hotel, his dad came in and saved him again.

Between 1989 and 1992, four of the entities that Fred Trump created paid his son today’s equivalent of $8.3 million. And when Donald Trump pleaded with bankers for an emergency line of credit, he used as collateral the stake his father had given him in a group of apartment buildings.


Basically, Trump’s father’s pockets were so deep that he refused to let his son fail, including coming up with creative ways to avoid paying taxes while gifting his son large amounts of money.

Fred Trump dispatched a trusted bookkeeper to Atlantic City with checks to buy $3.5 million in casino chips without placing a bet. With this ruse — an illegal loan under New Jersey gaming laws, resulting in a $65,000 civil penalty — Donald Trump narrowly avoided defaulting on his bonds.


And get this: After all of the money Papa Trump gave to his bumbling son, Donald Trump sent his father a document seeking a change in his will making him the sole executor of his estate.

In December 1990, Donald Trump sent his father a document that left him both angered and alarmed. It was a codicil seeking to make a variety of changes to Fred Trump’s will. Among them: strengthening provisions that made Donald Trump sole executor of his estate. But amid Mr. Trump’s financial shambles — it was the month of the $3.5 million Trump’s Castle rescue — Fred Trump feared that the document potentially put his life’s work at risk, that his son might use the empire as collateral to save his own failing businesses, according to depositions given years later during a family dispute.

Fred Trump rebuffed the maneuver, refusing to sign the codicil. But the episode prompted a family reckoning: Fred Trump was aging and ailing. Without speedy intervention, he could die leaving a vast estate — not just his real estate empire, but also tens of millions of dollars in cash — vulnerable to the 55 percent inheritance tax.

So with Donald Trump playing a central role, the family formulated a plan that included unorthodox tax strategies that experts told The Times were legally dubious and, in some cases, appeared to be fraudulent.


What the Times report does is confirm long-held leftist beliefs that the president of the United States is full of shit with fact-based evidence that can be used at any gathering of people wearing red hats and stuffing chew in their jowls.

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About the author

Stephen A. Crockett Jr.

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.