“When I want something, I get it. When I call, they kiss my ass. It’s true.”
That was Donald Trump, brand-building his crass presidential bid, at an Iowa rally in January.
Narcissist personality disorder aside, Trump could speak with such authority and assuredness because public servants like Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi were doing the deed of which he was boasting, the Associated Press reports.
Bondi, the state’s top legal boss and supposedly the protector of Floridians against scammers and scoundrels, asks Trump for a campaign donation. Weeks go by and her office announces that she’s considering joining a New York fraud probe of Trump University and its affiliates, reports the Orlando Sentinel. Four days later, the group backing Bondi’s re-election receives a Trump family foundation check for $25,000. Bondi’s office has a change of heart, finds insufficient grounds to proceed. No merit to the more than 20 complaints from Floridians against Trump University and its affiliates. No need to join the New York lawsuit.
AP followed the money from a Trump family foundation, in possible violation of rules regarding the political activities of charities, to the political group backing Bondi’s re-election, so cynically named And Justice for All. Trump’s daughter Ivanka also gave $500 to Bondi a week before the donation from The Donald J. Trump Foundation arrived, and another $25,000 to the Florida GOP the following year.
In New York and California, the complaints of people who bought into Trump University’s manipulative sales pitch, paid some $35,000 for promises of a real estate investing education, and later accused Trump of fraud were taken seriously. Trump is facing civil fraud lawsuits, and it’s going so bad for him that last week he railed against the presiding Indiana-born judge, saying he had an “absolute conflict of interest” because he’s of Mexican heritage and “I’m building a wall.”
In Florida, Bondi tried to explain backing off saying her office only had one complaint against Trump University. But documents unearthed by the Orlando Sentinel and reviewed by AP show differently. The attorney general’s office had received numerous complaints from people seeking help to get promised refunds for materials and personalized instruction that were never delivered by Trump Institute and/or Trump University, both under scrutiny in the New York trial.
People who had been laid off and suffering financially invested thousands of dollars, sometimes maxing out credit cards — as Trump advised — hoping his high-priced style of “education” would lead to income. Their investment didn’t generate a job, income to pay back those credit cards, or teach them anything of value other than the cost of falling for Trump’s foolery.
But how could Bondi be expected to fight for them after she — personally — solicited money from the man whose businesses her office was considering investigating?
Trump doesn’t tire of boasting that he gives politicians money and receives favors from them. His confessed intent to corrupt is not a problem for the GOP leadership walking “the voters have spoken” party line to endorse, support, and work for Trump’s election despite the racism, lies, and unstable personality in plain view.
Like the desperate people Trump talked into buying his magic wand to create a real estate fortune, Republican supporters think Trump will lead America to wealth and prosperity.
As president, the presumptive GOP nominee would be the perfect fox guarding the White House. Maybe he’ll tap Florida’s ready-to-please Bondi to be his top legal gun.