Wednesday 22 November 2017

Election watchdog can't handle my €10bn net worth, boasts Trump

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

Alistair Bell in Washington

US Republican presidential candidate and real estate magnate Donald Trump said yesterday his net worth has risen to more than $10bn and boasted that campaign finance watchdogs struggle to deal with someone as rich as he is.

The figure, which Mr Trump said he gave to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) in a financial declaration, was more than the nearly $9bn he cited only last month when he announced his candidacy for the presidency in 2016.

Mr Trump has taken a hit for statements he has made since announcing his candidacy. Major companies cut ties to him over comments he made describing Mexican immigrants as rapists.

He has nevertheless surged in the polls. In a poll by Suffolk University/USA Today released on Tuesday, Mr Trump took the top spot in the Republican field.

Mr Trump's net worth has been a source of speculation for years. The businessman, who has never held elected office, once sued an author whose book gave an estimate of the real estate developer's wealth much lower than Mr Trump's own. Still, he said in the statement, the FEC process was insufficient to capture the extent of his money. "This report was not designed for a man of Mr Trump's massive wealth," the statement said.

For example, to declare ownership of a building worth $1.5bn, he would have had to check a box labelled $50m or more, according to the statement. The FEC said it could not confirm or deny whether Mr Trump had filed his disclosure.

"Mr Trump's net worth has increased since the more than one-year-old financial statement produced at his presidential announcement," his statement read.

'Forbes' magazine, which closely tracks his finances, says Mr Trump has exaggerated his net worth, putting the figure at $4bn.

Irish Independent

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