As congressional hearings reveal more and more about just how deep Donald Trump’s and his team’s connections to Russia really go, a Reuters report has found that at least 63 individuals of what they call the “Russian elite” have bought nearly $100 million worth of property in Trump branded luxury towers in Florida.
While Trump has consistently denied he owns property or has investments in Russia, it is certainly worth noting this connection in reverse; Russians do have invests with Trump, which is yet another reason that Americans deserve to see Trump’s tax returns.
From the Reuters report:
The buyers include politically connected businessmen, such as a former executive in a Moscow-based state-run construction firm that works on military and intelligence facilities, the founder of a St. Petersburg investment bank and the co-founder of a conglomerate with interests in banking, property and electronics.
People from the second and third tiers of Russian power have invested in the Trump buildings as well. One recently posted a photo of himself with the leader of a Russian motorcycle gang that was sanctioned by the United States for its alleged role in Moscow’s seizure of Crimea.
The Reuters review of investors from Russia in Trump’s Florida condominium buildings found no suggestion of wrongdoing by President Trump or his real estate organization. And none of the buyers appear to be from Putin’s inner circle.
Informed of the Reuters analysis of Trump’s Russian condo investors, two Democratic opponents of the president, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), renewed their calls for greater disclosure of his finances.
“While the president has denied having invested in Russia, he has said little or nothing about Russian investment in his businesses and properties in the United States or elsewhere,” said Rep. Adam Schiff, ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee. “This should concern all Americans and is yet another reason why his refusal to release his tax returns should be met with considerable skepticism and concern.”
Is collusion with Russians Trump’s main reason for refusing to release his tax returns? Your guess is as good as mine, but it certainly makes sense.