Report: Trump Gave Kids Fake “Charity” Money, Gave Real Money to a Crime Boss HQ

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold published the results of his months-long, Pulitzer-worthy investigation of GOP nominee Donald Trump's fake charity and it includes several stories he previously reported on, but also many more new stories we're seeing for the first time.

His investigation, which you can read here, has revealed many amazing and appalling things, but these two anecdotes among many others stood out the most to me.

In 1997, for instance, he was “principal for a day” at a public school in an impoverished area of the Bronx. The chess team was holding a bake sale, Hot & Crusty danishes and croissants. They were $5,000 short of what they needed to travel to a tournament.

Trump had brought something to wow them.

“He handed them a fake million-dollar bill,” said David MacEnulty, a teacher and the chess team’s coach.

The team’s parent volunteers were thrilled.

Then disappointment.

Trump then gave them $200 in real money and drove away in a limousine.


The Trump Foundation gave $50,000 in 1995, and another $50,000 in 1999, to a nonprofit called the National Museum of Catholic Art and History.

Those gifts, not previously reported, seemed like an odd choice for big charitable dollars.

The museum was housed for much of the 1990s in a former headquarters for “Fat Tony” Salerno of the Genovese crime family in East Harlem. It had few visitors and little art. A Village Voice reporter, visiting in 2001, said the collection included a photo of the pope, some nun dolls bought from the Home Shopping Network, and — just off the dining room — “a black Jacuzzi decorated with simmering candles, gold-plated soap dishes, and kitsch angel figurines.”

Trump is not Catholic.

There are other equally amazing stories, such as one about Trump crashing a fundraiser for kids with AIDS and then leaving without donating a single dime.

We can infer many things about Trump himself, but this deeply-reported investigation also reveals that government oversight of non-profits and charities is sorely lacking. Trump has been getting away with it for decades and it appears that no one bothered to take a close look at his actions until 2016.

  • muselet

    Government oversight of nonprofits and charities is lax because most of them are not-for-profit and charitable organizations. Now, because of the Trump Foundation’s behavior, everyone else will have to complete mountains of additiional paperwork to prove they aren’t crooked.

    Thanks, Trump.

    And the only thing about the chess team story that’s surprising is that Donald Trump stuck a crowbar in his wallet and handed over any money at all.

    What a disgusting little man.


  • Username1016

    I want this to be a major major MAJOR story for all the networks and cable and major newspapers!!! Nobody cares about Hillary’s damn emails.

  • Annnnddddd none of this will be covered by the MSM because Emailghazi. I’m so frustrated right now I could scream. I’m going to have to stop reading the news over the next week and stop checking 538. My heart just can’t handle it.

    • JMAshby

      Cable news is a cancer and I tell everyone I know to never watch it.

      • But people are lazy and it’s easy to turn on the Boob Tube. And in all fairness, who has time to surf online and find a bajillion different conflicting reports, then research the sources to see if they’re trustworthy, then mull it over and decide who to believe it or not. The Internet seems to have created the perfect storm of too much information combined with too opening it up to too many bad actors who purposely muddy the waters (Trump, Assange and Putin, I’m looking at you). What is the average American supposed to do?

      • Aynwrong

        I mostly stick with MSNBC and then mostly the evening weekday hosts and Joy Reid on weekends. Anything else seems to be a lot “both sides” nonsense. Even Reid always has on some whore from the Trump campaign but at least she calls them on their lies.

        • ninjaf

          This is my strategy, as well. Although, we did watch “Face the Nation” this past Sunday and John Dickerson was pretty unbending with Mike Pence (by today’s standards, anyway. Previously, it might have just been called “journalism”).

          • Aynwrong

            I tuned into Mourning Joke yesterday and it was E-mail-pocalypse the whole time and all I could do was—>

            It’s weird watching MSNBC. Two parallel universes on the same channel that slowly melt into one another but the never the twain shall meet.

      • Christopher Foxx

        Not just cable. TV news on any network has become a joke.

    • Draxiar

      Irish…thank you summing up my current state in regards to all of this. I figure that if I didn’t care it wouldn’t bother me so much.

    • ninjaf

      I had trouble sleeping last night because of election anxiety. I have followed politics closely for as long as I can remember (yes, including watching “Sunday shows” as a child in single digits) and have never had this kind of election anxiety. Election day and the results can’t get here soon enough, as far as I am concerned.

      • For me it’s sleeping pill or booze. Not that either are all that great for you. Middle age is giving me enough sleepless nights and the last thing I need is a loss of sleep due to this insane election.