USA TODAY exclusive: Hundreds allege Donald Trump doesn’t pay his bills
"During the Atlantic City casino boom in the 1980s, Philadelphia cabinet-builder Edward Friel Jr. landed a $400,000 contract to build the bases for slot machines, registration desks, bars and other cabinets at Harrah's at Trump Plaza.
"The family cabinetry business, founded in the 1940s by Edward’s father, finished its work in 1984 and submitted its final bill to the general contractor for the Trump Organization, the resort’s builder. "Edward’s son, Paul, who was the firm’s accountant, still remembers the amount of that bill more than 30 years later: $83,600. The reason: the money never came. “That began the demise of the Edward J. Friel Company… which has been around since my grandfather,” he said.
"Donald Trump often portrays himself as a savior of the working class who will "protect your job." But a USA TODAY NETWORK analysis found he has been involved in more than 3,500 lawsuits over the past three decades – and a large number of those involve ordinary Americans, like the Friels, who say Trump or his companies have refused to pay them.
"At least 60 lawsuits, along with hundreds of liens, judgments, and other government filings reviewed by the USA TODAY NETWORK, document people who have accused Trump and his businesses of failing to pay them for their work. Among them: a dishwasher in Florida. A glass company in New Jersey. A carpet company. A plumber. Painters. Forty-eight waiters. Dozens of bartenders and other hourly workers at his resorts and clubs, coast to coast. Real estate brokers who sold his properties. And, ironically, several law firms that once represented him in these suits and others.
"Trump’s companies have also been cited for 24 violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act since 2005 for failing to pay overtime or minimum wage, according to U.S. Department of Labor data. That includes 21 citations against the defunct Trump Plaza in Atlantic City and three against the also out-of-business Trump Mortgage LLC in New York. Both cases were resolved by the companies agreeing to pay back wages.
"In addition to the lawsuits, the review found more than 200 mechanic’s liens – filed by contractors and employees against Trump, his companies or his properties claiming they were owed money for their work – since the 1980s. The liens range from a $75,000 claim by a Plainview, N.Y., air conditioning and heating company to a $1 million claim from the president of a New York City real estate banking firm. On just one project, Trump’s Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City, records released by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission in 1990 show that at least 253 subcontractors weren’t paid in full or on time, including workers who installed walls, chandeliers and plumbing.
"The actions in total paint a portrait of Trump’s sprawling organization frequently failing to pay small businesses and individuals, then sometimes tying them up in court and other negotiations for years. In some cases, the Trump teams financially overpower and outlast much smaller opponents, draining their resources. Some just give up the fight, or settle for less; some have ended up in bankruptcy or out of business altogether."
I quoted so much because there’s a lot of content in this investigative article.
Donald Trump tries to brush all these cases off as being from the "distant past", but Trump settled one of these cases just last month.
The list of people Trump has screwed over is extensive:
* Cabinet makers
* (actually, no electricans upon rereading the article, but there were bartenders, carpeters, glassmakers, painters, waiters, and a plumber)
* (A) Dishwasher
* Hourly workers
* Even Trump’s own lawyers
The company focused in this article, unfortunately, went out of business due in part to Trump’s refusal to pay for the work he commissioned. How many other people have been put out of business or work thanks to Trump’s refusal to pay for the work he ordered?
In light of these findings, how can anyone sincerely believe that Trump is fighting for the lower classes when he’s screwed so many of them over for decades, time and time again? How can anyone legitimately vote for this scam artist?
(Text in parentheses are edits after the original post.)