Donald Trump is the most corrupt President in history. A complete listing of his corruption, and of those very close to him, is almost impossible, but here are some highlights.
- Trump’s “Charitable” Foundation: Closed for fraud. Used as an illegal slush fund to profit his businesses and election campaign. Millions in settlement paid with written admission of guilt.
- Trump’s University: Closed for fraud, tens of millions in settlement paid.
- Trump’s Personal Attorney #1: In jail for financing fraud, some of it committed with Trump.
- Trump’s Campaign Manager: In jail for international financing fraud committed with Ukrainians.
- Trump’s Assistant Campaign Manager and Deputy for Inaugural Committee: In jail for fraud committed with Ukrainians.
- Trump’s Director of National Security: Pending sentencing for lying to the FBI to protect Trump.
- Trump’s Personal Attorney #2: Under investigation for associations with indicted international mobsters in Ukraine used to help Trump’s illegal efforts to enlist foreign assistance in his reelection.
- Trump: Detailed by Mueller Report to have obstructed justice.
- Trump: Rampant nepotism benefitting his daughter, assisting in her getting trademarks and other business deals from China.
- Trump: Rampant nepotism benefitting his son-in-law with questionable internal dealing with Saudi Arabia. When the son-in-law was unable to legitimately procure a security clearance, Trump imposed it by Presidential fiat.
- Trump: Payments to silence a porn star he had an affair with that he lied about. Personal attorney #1 is sitting in jail because of the illegal payment arrangement he set up with, and on behalf of Trump.
- Trump: Payments to silence a Playboy model he had an affair with that he lied about.
- Trump: Attempted to bribe a foreign power with American taxpayer dollars to assist in his election. His own Director of National Intelligence described the scheme as a “drug deal.”
- Trump: Numerous violations of emoluments clause. Had to back down from what would have been the most flagrant violation (G7 summit). Refers to this Constitutional provision as “phony.”
- Trump’s Secretary of Labor: Compelled to resign because of sweetheart plea deal he gave to notorious pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
- Jeffrey Epstein: Pedophile rapist described by Trump as a “terrific guy,” repeatedly pictured and videoed with Trump, mysteriously dies in Federal prison under the exclusive control of the Trump Administration. In court filed documents one of Epstein’s former sex slaves claimed Trump raped her when she was a minor and named Epstein as a witness. Notwithstanding this, and where Epstein died, Trump supporters actually have the hutzpah to claim that Clinton was somehow responsible for Epstein’s death. This bananas conspiracy theory was endorsed by the President of the United States by retweet.
- George Nader: Convicted (first in 2003) rapist, pedophile, and child porn pusher used repeatedly by the Trump Administration, particularly by Trump’s son-in-law, for those questionable dealings with Saudis. Served on and donated heavily to Trump’s inaugural committee. Recently convicted (again!) for raping little boys and pushing kiddie porn. You might wonder how Nader was caught this time around. It was part of the Mueller investigation that Trump labeled a “witch hunt” and “hoax.” Trump knew Nader was a convicted child-rapist and purveyor of child pornography when Trump overruled Secret Service objections to take this picture with him.
Some of these scandals are individually monumental. Cumulatively, they demonstrate that President Trump is the most corrupt President in history.
Yet, they are hardly noticed. One would think a President illegally using his charitable foundation for personal gain would be a very big deal. But when Trump’s charitable foundation settled for its fraudulent activities, paying millions in civil fines and admitting misconduct in writing, it barely registered as any scandal at all. It was a blip of a story, and Trump’s supporters did not waver in the slightest. This collective shrug is the silence heard around the world.
This exemplifies Trump’s greatest corruption: he has desensitized Americans to corruption. He has created a culture where corruption is so normalized that it is accepted as part of what our leaders do. His defenders generally don’t even try to defend his corruption, they simply resort to what-aboutism, suggesting that everyone does it. “What about Obama?”, “what about Clinton?”, and most recently, “what about Hunter Biden?”.
This “everyone is doing it” defense, despite often having no factual foundation, amplifies the normalization of corruption rather than reducing it.
Americans have long marveled at the pervasive corruption often found in other countries, from Ukraine to the various petty dictatorships and failing democracies the world over, and wondered how it came to be so common there, how the people in those nations just seem to accept it. In our own nation we are now discovering how that happens. It is unfolding before our eyes. Sadly, many ordinary Americans are now part of that process.
The normalization and acceptance of corruption in our leadership is now spreading through our nation like a cancer. The President of the United States attempted to bribe a foreign leader, with American tax dollars, to boost his reelection chances by smearing a political rival. Along the way Trump’s henchmen smeared one of his own ambassadors with lies so extreme that the State Department advised her that her security was threatened. When caught, Trump covered it up and intimidated witnesses into not testifying. He and his allies then exposed and smeared the whistleblower who revealed these truths.
If anything should justify removal from office, it would be this atrociously corrupt attempt to abuse power to stay in power. For the 2016 election it was bad that the Trump accepted Russian help in smearing his political opponents, but not bad enough because he did not actively work with them to attain it. For the 2020 election Trump not only worked with them to attain it, he held desperately-needed military assistance to a nation at war hostage to get it. He said “call my attorney general” and “call my personal attorney” to get this done. He would have succeeded if not for the whistleblower.
Yet in the Senate, only one member of his party voted to remove him from office. The rest were too cowed by his popularity within the rank and file of their party. Many GOP Senators acknowledged that his was guilty, and that what he did was wrong, but remarkably said it was not wrong enough. The same people, the same party, who two decades ago supported removing a President from office for lying about a blowjob, said Trump’s abuse of power didn’t “rise to the level” to remove a President from office. This incredible example of corruption was not corrupt enough. Even with the additional context of all the other instances of corruption listed above, they felt it was just not enough.
Within his party he remains enormously popular. He is effectively uncontested for his party’s nomination. He will, quite possibly, despite overwhelming evidence of corruption, be reelected. Such a decision by the American people can only further fuel the normalization of corruption.
Those nations where corruption is normalized are weak democracies if they are democracies at all. With corruption accepted as just part of the environment, those in power quickly apply the corruption to preserve their power. That is exactly what Trump has already done in Ukraine.
America is well on its way to having the kind of corrupt sham-government that we have condemned other nations for. Trump’s greatest corruption is not his own. In normalizing corruption, in convincing millions of Americans to accept and endorse it, he has corrupted the very soul of this great nation. Everyone who has allowed it to happen and cheer on his dishonesty and corruption because they think it “galls liberals” are at fault. It should gall us all.