A new report by House Democrats reveals that during his tenure at the White House, former President Donald Trump obtained almost $8 million from 20 different foreign governments.
Thursday’s report from House Democrats on the Oversight Committee reveals the scope of funds acquired through international transactions, involving contributions from the governments of China, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, and Malaysia, with a significant portion coming from China.
“After promising ‘the greatest infomercial in political history,’ former President Donald Trump repeatedly and willfully violated the U.S. Constitution by failing to divest from his business empire and allowing his businesses to accept millions of dollars in payments from some of the most corrupt nations on earth,” said Ranking Member Jamie Raskin.
The Committee implies that the 156-page report likely uncovers just a fraction of the foreign funds directed to Trump and his family throughout his 2017–2021 administration due to the Committee only having “limited” records available.
Raskin notes that in those limited records received, they found that Trump obtained over $5.5 million from the Chinese government and state-owned enterprises, along with millions from 19 other foreign governments, and the payments came through just four of the over 500 entities he owned.
China’s payments came through its Embassy in the United States, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, and Hainan Airlines Holding Company.
Saudi Arabia was the second-biggest spender, paying over $615,000 at the Trump World Tower and Trump International Hotel. The report points out that while Saudi Arabia was making these payments, Trump chose it as the destination for his first overseas trip as president.
“The governments making these payments sought specific foreign policy outcomes from President Trump and his administration. Each dollar former President Trump accepted violated the Constitution’s strict prohibition on payments from foreign governments, which the Founders enacted to prevent presidents from selling out U.S. foreign policy to foreign leaders,” said Raskin.
This report is a result from a multiyear probe that started in 2016 into Trump’s acceptance of payments from foreign-controlled entities during his presidency.
In reaction to the report, Eric Trump, a significant player in the Trump Organization and a witness in an ongoing civil fraud trial accusing his father of exaggerating wealth and asset values to deceive banks and insurance companies, dismissed the report as a “joke.”
“What a joke! All foreign government profits, for stays at our hotels and other properties while my father was in office, were voluntaraly donated to the United States Treasury. Just another example of MSNBC counter-narrative for the most corrupt family in political history—The Biden’s,” he wrote on X.
The news comes weeks after House Republicans launched an impeachment inquiry against President Joe Biden, primarily focusing on his son Hunter. Republicans allege that President Biden and his family wrongfully profited from his time as vice president under Barack Obama, pointing to business ventures Hunter had in Ukraine and China during that period.
This report urges Congress to create a new way for officials to disclose information about payments from foreign governments. It also suggests setting up a formal process for officials to get Congress’s permission before accepting such payments.