Presidential races

Businessman offers $1M to charity for Trump tax returns


A prominent businessman is publicly pledging to donate $1 million to any charity of Donald Trump’s choosing if the GOP presidential nominee releases his tax returns.

Moishe Mana told The Hill that he would make the contribution if Trump releases returns from the last five years by August 15.

{mosads}Mana is a real estate developer and philanthropist who immigrated to the U.S. from Tel Aviv, Israel.

He said he voted for both parties in the past but began supporting Democrats their presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, this summer. He donated $33,400 earlier this year to the Democratic National Committee and says he will be cutting a six-figure check for Clinton next month.

Mana’s is only the latest effort to pressure Trump into releasing his tax returns.

In July, Clinton ally David Brock said an anonymous Republican donor was prepared to donate $5 million to a veterans charity if Trump publicized his tax returns by July 15. Trump did not act on the offer.

Mana said his effort is not related to Brock’s.

Trump has previously argued that he cannot release his returns because he is being audited. But the IRS has said that nothing is preventing Trump from releasing them.

“Mr. Trump is undergoing a routine audit and will release his tax returns once the audit is complete,” Hope Hicks, a spokeswoman for Trump, told The Hill on Tuesday.

Trump’s tax returns have gained extra scrutiny from Democrats and even some Republicans as the GOP nominee makes his business record a centerpiece of his case for the presidency.

Mana told The Hill he conducts business in New York City and Miami, and while he doesn’t know Trump personally, they run in the same circles.

He questioned the Trump campaign’s claims that the candidate is worth “in excess of 10 billion dollars.” Mana said that he believes Trump is worth no more than $200–300 million.

“We are both involved in the community of New York City, and I’ve known the history of Trump — stealing and lying and bankruptcies — and you know, I didn’t really care,” Mana said.

“But now when he really wants to go ahead and use his purposes on the country, this country will go bankrupt. Already, he’s got America on the vision for moral bankruptcy.”

Mana said the public has become complacent over what he sees as Trump’s lack of transparency.

“People are agreeing now, ‘Oh okay, so we’ll do without this,’ and every day, we’re compromising more,” he said.

Mana also said that unlike other Jewish, pro-Israel businessmen such as billionaire GOP megadonor Sheldon Adelson, he has serious concerns with Trump’s rhetoric.

“It’s comfortable for us because he’s against Muslims today,” Mana said. “We always feel that nothing will happen to us, but it can come to us like a tsunami, and he opened a very dangerous door.

“We have nothing to do with the Ku Klux Klan. We have nothing in common with them. And all of a sudden we have Jews and the KKK voting for the same person. Something is wrong with this picture,” he added.

The $1 million commitment would be Mana’s biggest politically related contribution to date.

Mana said he is not registered as a Democrat or a Republican and generally prefers to stay out of politics.

“I’m not such a big fan of Hillary Clinton, I’m not in love with her, but today I see her as the savior. She’s the only thing left between us and Trump,” he said.

Mana, though, doesn’t have high hopes that Trump will act on his offer, despite the benefits to charity.

Jonathan Swan contributed.

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