Trump's Self-Made Billionaire Claims Are a Myth: NYT report finds Trump received what would amount today to at least $413 million from his father

Wednesday, October 3, 2018
President Trump puts on a hard hat as he addresses the National Electrical Contractors Convention on Tuesday in Philadelphia. Credit: Mark Makes/Getty Images

Trump's Self-Made Billionaire Claims Are a Myth: NYT report finds Trump received what would amount today to at least $413 million from his father

"Women Are Doing Great": Trump mocks Ford, says "it's a very scary time for young men"

I Didn't Know Christian Bale Could Look This Much Like Dick Cheney: The trailer for "Vice" is out

Hunter Schwarz

What Washington is Talking About:
Senators are split over whether to release the FBI's report on Brett Kavanaugh, officials from US Olympic sports are testifying before the Senate Commerce subcommittee on preventing sexual abuse of amateur athletes, and the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is holding a confirmation hearing on commissioners for the Census Bureau and Postal Regulatory Commission. 

What America is Talking About:
It's "Mean Girls" Day, at around around 2:18 p.m. ET, cell phone users are expected to get a test "presidential alert" notification from the National Wireless Emergency Alert System, and there's a chance the Toys R Us brand could be brought back to life.

Poll of the Day:
If the election were held today, half of American voters would want to see Democrats control the Senate and 43% would want to see Republicans control it, according to a Quinnipiac poll released Tuesday.
Credit: Quinnipiac

Trump's Self-Made Billionaire Claims Are a Myth, NYT Report Finds:
President Trump has long branded himself a self-made billionaire, but a nearly 14,000-word front page New York Times report found that to be a myth. The Times' reporting found that Trump received what would amount today to at least $413 million from his father, that Trump was a millionaire by age 8, and that his father helped him when business went bad. It found that the future president and his family engaged in tax dodging schemes and "outright fraud."

The story took up the entire A1 above the fold today:
Credit: Hunter Schwarz

Charles Harder, an attorney for Trump, denied the story, and Trump this morning tweeted that the NYT published a "very old, boring and often told hit piece on me."

New York State Department of Taxation and Finance spokesman James Gazzale said in a statement that the department is "reviewing the allegations" in the article and is "vigorously pursuing all appropriate avenues of investigation."

The reporters who wrote the story -- David Barstow, Russell Buetttner and Susanne Craig -- will be featured Sunday in "The Family Business: Trump and Taxes," a documentary on Showtime. Craig says in the trailer for the documentary that they obtained Fred Trump's estate tax return.

"That opened a door to understanding a huge transfer of wealth that happened," she said. "It gave us so much more information to be able to understand the tax games that were played. And then once you sort of pulled the string, the whole thing unraveled."

Trump Mocks Ford, Says "Women Are Doing Great":
At a rally last night in Southaven, Mississippi, Trump, mocked Christine Blasey Ford for not remembering some details about the night she said she was sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh. And earlier in the day, Trump told the press that "it's a very scary time for young men in America" and that "women are doing great." Trump -- who was caught on a hot mic bragging about sexual assault and has been accused by at least 15 women of misconduct including lewd behavior, sexual harassment, and sexual assault and has denied the accusations -- said the public reckoning over Kavanaugh "has much more to do than even the appointment of a Supreme Court justice."

Suspicious Letters:
A number of suspicious letters have been sent this week. Here's what we know:
  • A letter addressed to Trump at the White House contained a substance believed to be ricin. The envelope did not enter the White House, the Secret Service said.
  • Two pieces of mail delivered to the Pentagon mail facility for Secretary of Defense James Mattis and chief of naval operations, Adm. John Richardson, on Monday tested positive for ricin.
Defense Department personnel, wearing protective suits, screen mail as it arrives at a US government facility near the Pentagon. Credit: Thomas Watkins/AFP/Getty Images

Clinton Compares Russian Attack to 9/11:
Hillary Clinton called Russia's attack on the 2016 campaign the first time "we have been attacked by a foreign power and have done nothing" and compared it to 9/11. She spoke at the Atlantic Festival in Washington on Tuesday.

"It would be like -- I can't even imagine, I mean, it's a horrible example -- but after 9/11, George W. Bush said, 'Well, I don't have time to meet. I don't have time to worry about this. It was terrible. We feel sorry about it. We'll rebuild New York and the Pentagon, but we're not going to worry about it,'" Clinton said. "Well at a certain point, that's what this is turning into. The evidence continues to accumulate."

On the second day of her trip to Africa, first lady Melania Trump visited Cape Coast Castle in Ghana, where dungeons once held slaves before they were taken across the Atlantic. 

"This is a very special place, I will never forget," she said. "The stories that I heard from the gentleman, it's really, really touching. The dungeons that I saw, it's really something that people should see and experience. And what happened so many years ago, it's really a tragedy."

Former President Obama visited in 2009, and a space there next to a local chief's palace is named Obama Hall in his honor. Here's a plaque marking the Obama's visit that Kate snapped a shot of:
Credit: Kate Bennett

I Didn't Know Christian Bale Could Look This Much Like Dick Cheney:
Christian Bale as Dick Cheney is everything you thought it could be and more. The trailer for the upcoming movie "Vice" is out. Also worth seeing in the trailer is Steve Carrell as Donald Rumsfeld.
Credit: Annapurna Pictures/YouTube

Lil Wayne Samples Obama to Encourage Kids to Stay in School:
Lil Wayne performed his new track "Dedicate" on the "Tonight Show" on Tuesday. It ends with a clip of Obama urging kids to consider future careers outside of hip-hop or pro sports: "They might think they've got a pretty good jump shot or a pretty good flow. But our kids can't all aspire to be LeBron or Lil Wayne," Obama says. Lil Wayne closed his performance by saying, "stay in school."

Street Art Sighting:
Street artist Lushsux turned the latest image of Kanye West in a MAGA hat into a mural with a speech bubble that reads, "Yandhi Is Gone," referring to West's forthcoming album Yandhi, which is being pushed back after it didn't come out Saturday like West said it would.
Credit: @lushsux/Instagram

West told TMZ he didn't get it finished in time and will travel to Africa to complete it. West also attempted on TMZ to clear up his comments about abolishing the 13th Amendment and said he's tried to reach out to Colin Kaepernick about inviting him to the White House.

If you spot political street art, tweet me @hunterschwarz, tag me on Instagram @hunterschwarz, or email me at with your sighting so I can feature it in COVER/LINE.

Kate Bennett is off.
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