House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Monday said the notes coming due for President Donald Trump valued at hundreds of millions pose a ‘national security risk’ for the nation.
Pelosi spoke in the Capitol a day after the New York Times released its bombshell report on Trump’s finances. The report not only revealed the president paid just $750 in taxes in 2016, it also catalogue debts running into the hundreds of millions.
The paper reports Trump is personally on the hook for $300 million in debts coming due in the next four years. His loans and other debts total $421 million, the paper calculated after obtaining years worth of his returns.
‘This president appears to have over $400 million in debt. To whom? Different countries? What is the leverage they have? So for me, this is a national security question,’ Pelosi told NBC.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned President Trump’s hundreds of millions in debts pose a ‘national security risk’
‘We take an oath to protect and defend. This president is commander in chief. He has exposure to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, to whom? The public has a right to know.’
‘I’m an intelligence person,’ said Pelosi, a member of the congressional ‘gang of eight’ who gets top briefings and a former top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee.
She noted that when there is a review of a federal employee or appointee ‘if they have outstanding debt, that is an important factor. Because that means somebody else has leverage over them.’
President Trump has $300 million in loans coming due in the next four years
The New York Times was able to obtain years of Trump tax return information
‘The question is what does Putin have on the president politically, personally, financially in every way?’ Pelosi said of Russian President Vladimir Putin
Trump’s biggest lender is Deutsche Bank
She noted that despite Trump’s tiny 2017 tax bill, he paid over $300,000 in taxes to other countries ‘that we know of. It may be more.’ They include the Philippines and Turkey.
Trump for years has refused to release his tax returns, and declined to do so again Sunday, saying he was still under audit.
The state of Trump’s debts could set up a difficult and unprecedented situation for lenders who must decide whether to seek to initiate foreclose on a sitting president.
‘He has exposure to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. To whom? The public has a right to know.’
Pelosi also raised the issue of Russia.
‘The question is what does Putin have on the president politically, personally, financially in every way?’
Pelosi’s House Democrats have spent years trying to get their hands on Trump’s tax returns, but learned about the bombshell by reading the newspaper.
Trump’s son Eric, a top Trump Organization executive, once famously told a golf writer about the company’s finances: ‘Well, we don’t rely on American banks. We have all the funding we need out of Russia
Two of Trump’s most famous properties: Trump Tower in New York City and Trump National Doral in Miami, Florida, have been mortgaged and those amounts will need to be paid by 2024.
In 2012, Trump purchased Doral for $150 million.
The Times reported that through 2018 the losses on the Florida golf property have totaled $162.3 million.
The tax records show that Trump pumped $213 million into Doral.
And there’s a $125 million mortgage balance on the property, which is coming due in three years, the Times report noted.
Additionally in 2012, Trump took out a $100 million mortgage on the commercial space in Trump Tower.
He took nearly the entire amount as a payout, the Times reported.
And while his company has paid more than $15 million in interest on the loan, none of the principal has been paid.
The full $100 million is due in 2022.
Another problem area for Trump is the money he’ll owe the federal government should he lose his ongoing dispute with the Internal Revenue Service.
The president received a 2010 IRS refund that totaled $70.1 million, as he was able to use a provision in a President Obama-approved Great Recession bill that allowed taxpayers to go back four years – instead of two – and get a tax refund if they were experiencing losses.
That enabled Trump to request a refund for the $13.3 million in taxes he had paid in 2007, but also the $56.9 million he had paid in 2005 and 2006 when ‘The Apprentice’ gave him a huge financial bump.
Refunds over $2 million need the approval of IRS auditors and the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.
The committee received records of Trump’s IRS audit in 2011 and an agreement was reached in late 2014, the Times wrote, but then the audit resumed and grew to include Trump’s taxes for 2010 through 2013.
The case was pushed back to the committee in spring 2016, as Trump was close to receiving the Republican nomination and has stayed there since.
If Trump loses the case, he could owe the government more than $100 million, which would include the original sum, plus interest.
Trump argued on Monday he is ‘entitled’ to the tax credits he received and said he would release ‘financial statements’ that would show ‘all’ his properties, assets and debts.
He attacked the Times in a news conference on Sunday evening and then sent out a series of tweets Monday morning where he accused the newspaper of ‘illegally’ obtaining his tax information, argued he paid ‘millions’ in taxes and was ‘entitled’ to the credits he received.
‘The Fake News Media, just like Election time 2016, is bringing up my Taxes & all sorts of other nonsense with illegally obtained information & only bad intent. I paid many millions of dollars in taxes but was entitled, like everyone else, to depreciation & tax credits,’ Trump wrote.
‘Also, if you look at the extraordinary assets owned by me, which the Fake News hasn’t, I am extremely under leveraged – I have very little debt compared to the value of assets,’ Trump added.