The new documents provide concrete evidence of foreign governments spending money directly with Trump’s companies, which Democrats on the House Oversight Committee say raises new questions about potential efforts to influence the former US president through his companies while he is in the White House.
The hotel’s accounting records were obtained by the House Oversight Committee through Trump’s former accounting firm Mazars, and provided to CNN.
The committee, which investigated Trump’s business and lease of property from the government, was provided with the records after a years-long court battle that ended in a settlement in September.
While foreign delegations stayed at the hotel during Trump’s time in office, the documents, which include expenditures from China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Malaysia and the UAE, provide the first detailed accounting records of those stays.
The Trump Hotel, which he opened in 2016, has become a magnet for Donald Trump loyalists, Republicans and lobbyists hoping to reach administration officials.
The hotel has long been a source of criticism from Democrats, who have accused Donald Trump of violating the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which bars a president from receiving “an emolument or profit from any foreign king, prince, or state” unless approved by Congress.
Spending on record included more than $250,000 by Malaysia, more than $280,000 by Qatar, more than $90,000 by Saudis, and more than $74,000 by the UAE.
In addition, lobbyists and other companies with ties to foreign governments have poured tens of thousands of additional funds into Trump’s Washington properties.
There is no evidence that foreign spending at the Trump Hotel, which was sold by the Trump Organization earlier this year, directly affected US politics, but many stays at the hotel coincided with important foreign policy events, including meetings between Donald Trump and Trump. And other foreign leaders and the efforts of the United States to resolve the crisis of the four countries boycotting Qatar in 2017.
The committee sent a letter Monday to the National Archives detailing portions of what was in the partially redacted accounting records and requesting additional presidential records related to the Trump hotel and foreign governments “to determine whether former President Trump distorted American foreign policy to serve his own financial interests.”
House Oversight Committee Chair Carolyn Maloney said in a statement to CNN: “These documents seriously raise the question of the extent to which President Trump’s personal financial interest while in office is directed at the expense of looking after the best interests of the American people. These documents, which the committee continues to obtain from (Mazars) It will guide our legislative efforts to ensure that future presidents do not abuse their positions of power for personal gain.”
A National Archives spokesperson told CNN that they “received the letter and will respond in accordance with the Presidential Records Act.”
The committee’s announcement of Trump’s financial documents comes a day before Donald Trump makes a “special announcement” at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, where the former president is expected to launch another campaign to run for president in 2024.
Trump’s business dealings, as well as those of his family members, have been under scrutiny for years, and continued in the months after he left office.
The House Oversight Committee began receiving financial documents from Mazars in September after reaching an agreement to end litigation over the documents, and the committee first subpoenaed the company for Trump’s financial records related to his hotel in April 2019.
It is not clear what other expenditures at Trump’s former Washington hotel from other governments are listed in documents provided to the committee, or how much foreign spending contributed to the hotel’s total revenue.
CNN has reached out to the embassies of countries listed in the House censorship documents for comment.
“As a company we’ve gone to great lengths to avoid conflicts of interest, not because of any legal requirements, but out of respect for the office of the presidency, we’ve walked away from billions of dollars in new deals, and we’ve stopped expanding,” Eric Trump told CNN in response to questions about overseas spending. We have engaged with outside legal counsel to review any material transactions, and furthermore, we have voluntarily donated on an annual basis all profits from foreign government sponsorship of our properties to the US Treasury Department.
After Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt imposed a boycott of Qatar in 2017, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi and Doha not only publicly pressed Trump for his support in helping resolve the crisis, but also spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the former president’s hotel, they show. Documents provided to CNN.
Documents obtained by the House Oversight Committee show spending by the governments of the three Gulf states at the Trump Hotel from late 2017 through mid-2018, including large payments to book rooms for senior foreign officials at a time when they were actively looking for support from the Trump administration in crisis. interrupt.