Donald Trump Might Be Guilty of the Exact Thing He Trashes Hillary Clinton For
Donald Trump is facing backlash over possibly paying for political favors, even though he has vehemently accused Hillary Clinton of the same.
In 2013, Trump's foundation donated to the re-election campaign of Pamela Bondi, Florida's attorney general. According to Politico, Trump was fined $2,500 for the $25,000 donation since tax-exempt charitable groups are prohibited from making political donations.
His donation raises suspicion because, according to the Orlando Sentinel, Trump made the donation to Bondi just six days after her office said it was reviewing fraud charges against Trump University. She eventually declined to join the multistate investigation into Trump University; what's more, Trump held a fundraiser for Bondi at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida in 2014.
Both Trump and Bondi have denied ever speaking about Trump University, and it would be difficult to prove they did, since no communication about the topic exists on paper. In fact, Trump has denied ever speaking to Bondi personally, according to CBS reporter Sopan Deb. However, the Associated Press reports that Bondi had called Trump and solicited the donation.
What makes the situation especially disconcerting is that Trump potentially engaged in the exact same practice that he has attacked Hillary Clinton for. The GOP nominee has consistently said that Clinton gave special treatment to countries who donated to the Clinton Foundation while she was secretary of state. His accusation is based on email exchanges between Clinton Foundation employees approaching State Department aides for access to Clinton donors. While the emails indicate a possible link between the Clinton Foundation's charitable donations and receiving meetings with Clinton, there is no concrete evidence connecting the two.
During a rally for his wife in Florida, Bill Clinton also pointed out the hypocrisy. Addressing the crowd, Clinton said that Trump "attacked my foundation. He uses his foundation's money to pay off your attorney general."
Trump's campaign has pushed back against the "pay-to-play" allegations. Kellyanne Conway, Trump's campaign manager, appeared on Bloomberg, calling the accusation "ridiculous," reports Politico, but lawmakers in Florida have called for an investigation into the donation.