$15M Turned Trump Into China's Chump

How Xi bought off America's President for a few million dollars and some trademark approvals

$15M Turned Trump Into China's Chump

Thanks for reading and sharing. If you haven’t already subscribed, please do. And thanks!

Earlier this year, former National Security Adviser John Bolton revealed how, from the start of his Presidency, Trump inextricably linked his policy toward China with his own personal interests. Bolton’s book revealed, wrote The New York Times, that “the administration has generally been divided between those who see China as a national security threat and those who see it as a business opportunity.”

Now The New York Times is back with more.

Trump took $15.1 million from China in 2017

According to the Times, not only is Trump a loyal Chinese taxpayer—paying $188,000 in Chinese taxes in the years 2013-2015—he also keeps a hidden bank account there, one that received a suspiciously sudden windfall in 2017, the year Trump became President:

In 2017, the company reported an unusually large spike in revenue—some $17.5 million, more than the previous five years’ combined. It was accompanied by a $15.1 million withdrawal by Mr. Trump from the company’s capital account.

That’s right. Despite his “I will be leaving my great businesses in total” pledge of 2016, the China bank account of Trump International Hotels Management received a massive windfall at the very moment Trump and the Chinese President started their trade negotiations. (In addition to the dozens of trademarks the Chinese government began showering on Trump’s daughter Ivanka the very same year.)

Trump hid the fact the money came from China

According to the Times, Trump’s financial disclosures concealed the source of the $15.1 million he received from China, describing it simply as “management fees and other contract payments.”

This revelation makes clear how inadequate Trump’s “financial disclosures” are in revealing where and how Trump is making his money—and exactly to whom the cash-strapped businessman still owes the $900 million in debt he has coming due in the next four years.

What China got for the money

At the start of 2020, after being bossed around and humiliated by President Xi for more than two years, Trump was so desperate for an election-year trade deal—any deal—that he went soft on China as the coronavirus spread untested and unchecked across America.

As Politico reported in April, Trump praised China for “its response to the virus throughout January and February” and “touted China’s government for its transparency and hard work to defeat the coronavirus that causes the illness.”

Trump’s latest National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien warned Trump in January that the virus, “will be the biggest national security threat you face in your presidency.”

But, as his old National Security Adviser John Bolton understood, Trump had no real concern for national security—and simply treated China as a business opportunity.

Meanwhile, 8.5 million Americans have now been infected and more than 225,000 have died. The economy is in tatters.

Why? Because Trump put his own interests ahead of the country’s.

But two weeks before the election, we still don’t know what other secrets are buried in Trump’s tax returns, what other payments he has received from foreign governments and businesses… and what additional favors he has granted in return.

The election is just days away. In the midst of the pandemic and the economic crisis, it’s an  “all-hands-on-deck” moment for US democracy. Not everyone can afford a subscription to a  newsletter like this right now. That’s why I’m making all issues free until the election. But if you can afford to support on a month-to-month or annual basis, today’s a great time to subscribe. Thanks!

P.S.  If you’d like to support with a one-time donation, I’ve added a “buy me a coffee” option, too:

← Trump Death Panels Come to Utah
Ivanka Trump Has a Trademark on Corruption →

Subscribe to Unprecedented

Subscribe to the newsletter and unlock access to member-only content.