Tag: ivana trump
Ivana Trump's Golf Course Grave Delivers 'Trifecta Of Tax Avoidance'

Ivana Trump's Golf Course Grave Delivers 'Trifecta Of Tax Avoidance'

A researcher confirmed earlier media reports indicating former President Donald Trump may receive hefty tax breaks for having his ex-wife buried on the Trump-owned golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey. Ivana Trump, 73, died in her Manhattan home on July 14 from "blunt impact injuries" to her torso, The Washington Post reported of an autopsy report from New York City's chief medical examiner. Ivana was initially found unconscious on a staircase in her home after police got an emergency call around 12:40 p.m., the Post reported. Her death was ruled an accident, and her remains were buried at the Trump National Golf Club.

"As a tax researcher, I was skeptical of rumors Trump buried his ex-wife in that sad little plot of dirt on his Bedminster, NJ golf course just for tax breaks,” Brooke Harrington, a sociology professor at Dartmouth College, tweeted on Saturday. “So I checked the NJ tax code & folks...it's a trifecta of tax avoidance. Property, income & sales tax, all eliminated."

Harrington cited New Jersey tax code and documents that the ProPublica news nonprofit published indicating tax exemptions in place since May 2016 for what’s deemed a nonprofit cemetery service. The Trump Family Trust is located in Hackettstown, New Jersey, some 20 miles northeast of Ivana’s gravesite.

Still, The New Jersey Cemetery Act relieves cemeteries of "Real Property Taxes on lands dedicated to cemetery purposes; Income Taxes; Sales and Use Taxes; Business Taxes; and Inheritance Taxes."

Cemetery property is also “exempt from sale for collection of judgments,” and cemetery trust funds and trust income are “exempt from tax and exempt from sale or seizure for collection of judgments against the cemetery company,” New Jersey law states.

It defines a cemetery company as: “any individual, corporation, partnership, association, or other public or private entity which owns, operates, controls, or manages land or places used or dedicated for use for burial of human remains or disposition of cremated human remains, including a crematory located on dedicated cemetery property.”

As such, cemetery companies are prohibited from manufacturing or selling “vaults, private mausoleums, monuments, markers, or bronze memorials” and conducting “any funeral home” or “mortuary science” services.

Trump's plans to use a portion of his 500-acre golf club for burial grounds were detailed in a 2012 NPR story. In that piece, journalist Nancy Solomon wrote that any member of the golf club "who pays about $150,000 to join and an additional $20,000 in annual dues" could be buried at the cemetery.

Former council member Sally Rubin worked out a deal with Trump to allow 500 graves on the golf club site as long as they weren't visible. “If he wants a mausoleum and he wants to do it for himself and he wants to put that on the golf club proper, I didn't have a problem with that,” Rubin told NPR. “It's a large piece of property, and he has a lot more flexibility there, but I did not want it on a scenic rural road in our community."

Ivana’s gravemarker is a flat, rectangular piece with her name and dates of birth and death.

“I am very saddened to inform all of those that loved her, of which there are many, that Ivana Trump has passed away at her home in New York City,” the former president earlier wrote in a statement announcing her death. “ She was a wonderful, beautiful, and amazing woman, who led a great and inspirational life.

“Her pride and joy were her three children, Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric. She was so proud of them, as we were all so proud of her," Trump added with a “Donate To Save America” link at the bottom.

In the wake of Ivana's death, depositions related to the civil fraud probe New York Attorney General Letitia James launched into the former president as well as his children Donald Jr. and Ivanka were postponed, the Post reported.

“In light of the passing of Ivana Trump yesterday, we received a request from counsel for Donald Trump and his children to adjourn all three depositions, which we have agreed to,” Delaney Kempner, a spokeswoman for the New York State Attorney General, told the newspaper on July 15. “This is a temporary delay and the depositions will be rescheduled as soon as possible. There is no other information about dates or otherwise to provide at this time.”

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos.

Endorse This: Recording Reveals Trump Impersonating PR Rep, Planting Stories About Himself

Endorse This: Recording Reveals Trump Impersonating PR Rep, Planting Stories About Himself

It shouldn’t be any surprise that Donald Trump used to call up reporters and plant stories about himself while impersonating public relations professionals.

And yet, that doesn’t make it any less entertaining.

In tapes uncovered by The Washington Post‘s Marc Fisher, Trump — or, as he says in the call, part time Trump spokesman John Miller — is heard calling People magazine reporter Sue Carswell, casually discussing his recently-ended marriage to Ivana Trump, his new relationship with Marla Maples, and how in demand he — ahem, his boss — is, regularly fielding phone calls from women interested in dating… his boss. Like Madonna.

Apparently, Trump pulled this kind of stunt all the time. He even admitted later to Carswell that the impersonation was a “joke gone awry.”

But no! Don’t worry about this! Go ahead, America! No chance at all this guy is a dangerous egomaniac, committed to nothing but his own personal benefit, cheating however he can, whenever he can, to get anything he wants.

Nothing to see here!

Trump Getting Positive Coverage — On Rape Allegation?

Trump Getting Positive Coverage — On Rape Allegation?

It took a while, but Donald Trump has finally gotten hit by a story that is actually eliciting some sympathetic responses from the media — unfortunately, the story in question is an allegation of spousal rape, published Monday evening on The Daily Beast.

The story’s main reporter, Tim Mak, appeared Wednesday on MSNBC’s Morning Joe to discuss his piece, and the initial reactions by Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen — who threatened a lawsuit against Mak, and also falsely claimed that spousal rape is not even a crime at all.

Joe Scarborough, along with Mika Brzezinski and Mike Barnicle, focused their skepticism on Mak himself, and whether it was even appropriate to dredge Ivana Trump’s allegation into the limelight after over 20 years, calling the coverage “ugly.”

Scarborough brought Mak’s appearance to a close by diminishing his reporting entirely: “All right Tim, we’re going to get you back on another topic. I think it’s just better for all of us right now to thank you for coming, and slowly step away from this segment.”

“Boy,” Scarborough said, “he walked right into a buzzsaw.”

Scarborough then cited Mak’s story as an example of why successful people, who have lived “colorful lives,” don’t run for office. He pointed to Donald and Ivana Trump’s post-divorce reconciliation to argue the story’s irrelevance, and speculated that Trump’s high poll numbers may be an indication that voters have grown sick of such sensationalistic coverage.

This was enough for The Donald himself to chime in with characteristic grace, in a tweet of thanks to Scarborough:

Trump is also getting some sympathy from an interesting source: one of his rival Republican candidates. Ohio governor John Kasich was also asked about the story Tuesday night on CNN — and he said such allegations simply shouldn’t be part of the political process. “Just leave him alone,” Kasich said.

“Maybe the nature of the beast ought to change a little bit. […] There are limits here,” Kasich said. “I don’t want to comment, or maybe somebody else will comment on it. I’m not gonna do it, because I’m sure that it is extremely painful for him, for his former wife, for his kids, and, you know, that shouldn’t be what we’re doing in this business.”

It’s an interesting argument — coming from a man who previously voted to impeach Bill Clinton for a sex scandal.

Photo: U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump arrives to speak at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, United States, July 18, 2015. (REUTERS/Jim Young)

Trump Campaign Tries Again On Rape Allegation Pushback

Trump Campaign Tries Again On Rape Allegation Pushback

This might be the first actual apology to come out of Camp Trump: The Donald’s lawyer, Michael Cohen, is backtracking on his claim that Donald Trump couldn’t possibly have raped his first wife — because, supposedly, there’s no such thing legally as spousal rape. (Note: There definitely is.)

“As an attorney, husband, and father there are many injustices that offend me but nothing more than charges of rape or racism. They hit me at my core,” Cohen said in a statement given to CNN Tuesday morning. “Rarely am I surprised by the press, but the gall of this particular reporter to make such a reprehensible and false allegation against Mr. Trump truly stunned me. In my moment of shock and anger, I made an inarticulate comment — which I do not believe — and which I apologize for entirely.”

The trouble started with an article in The Daily Beast on Monday evening, which revived a story dating back to Trump’s divorce from his first wife Ivana in the early 1990s. In a deposition, Ivana had claimed that Donald assaulted and raped her in 1989, after a confrontation involving Donald being unsatisfied with plastic surgery he had gotten to remove a bald spot. Donald and Ivana eventually reached a settlement in their divorce case.

“You’re talking about the frontrunner for the GOP, presidential candidate, as well as a private individual who never raped anybody,” Trump’s special counsel Cohen told the site. “And, of course, understand that by the very definition, you can’t rape your spouse.”

“It is true,” Cohen further insisted. “You cannot rape your spouse. And there’s very clear case law.”

However, this is simply not true: The historical common-law tradition that a husband could not be liable for raping his wife was undone decades ago in this country. As for Trump’s own home state, New York’s martial rape exemption was overturned by the state’s top court in 1984 — five years before the alleged incident with Ivana — and by 1993 all 50 states had formally recognized marital rape as a crime. (However, there continue to be difficulties in actually enforcing these laws.)

Cohen also had some further strong words to say to the site:

“I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know,” Cohen said. “So I’m warning you, tread very f***ing lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be f***ing disgusting. You understand me?”

“You write a story that has Mr. Trump’s name in it, with the word ‘rape,’ and I’m going to mess your life up… for as long as you’re on this frickin’ planet… you’re going to have judgments against you, so much money, you’ll never know how to get out from underneath it,” he added.

In addition to Cohen’s apology for his remarks, Ivana Trump herself is defending her ex-husband in another statement given to CNN:

I have recently read some comments attributed to me from nearly 30 years ago at a time of very high tension during my divorce from Donald. The story is totally without merit. Donald and I are the best of friends and together have raised three children that we love and are very proud of. I have nothing but fondness for Donald and wish him the best of luck on his campaign. Incidentally, I think he would make an incredible president.

Photo: U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, United States, July 18, 2015. (REUTERS/Jim Young)