Trump Lashes out at New York AG Who Sued His Foundation

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), December 20, 2018 | Go to article overview

Trump Lashes out at New York AG Who Sued His Foundation


Byline: David A. Fahrenthold The Washington Post

WASHINGTON -- A day after President Donald Trump agreed to shut down his personal charity -- which the New York Attorney General has sued for "persistently illegal conduct" -- the president used Twitter to lash out at the attorney general who sued.

And her predecessor. And her successor.

In tweets posted around 10 a.m., Trump criticized Attorney General Barbara Underwood, who he said "does little else but rant, rave & politic against me. Will never be treated fairly by these people -- a total double standard of 'justice.'"

In June, Underwood filed a lawsuit against the Donald J. Trump Foundation, as well as against Trump himself and the three eldest Trump children.

She has accused Trump of allowing "a shocking pattern of illegality" at the charity -- saying that Trump used it to pay legal settlements for his for-profit businesses, to buy portraits of himself, and to boost his presidential campaign by paying for giveaways at Trump's Iowa rallies.

On Tuesday, Underwood announced that Trump had agreed to dissolve the foundation, and to distribute its remaining $1.7 million to charities approved by Underwood and a New York state judge.

Trump did not admit to wrongdoing in that agreement. And the agreement does not stop Underwood's lawsuit: She is still asking a court to impose millions of dollars in fines and penalties on Trump, and to ban Trump and his children from serving on the boards of other New York nonprofits.

The attack on Underwood was odd, because she is a non-politician who has maintained a low public profile during her short time in office.

Underwood is a former U.S. solicitor general, who was working as New York's solicitor general, an appointed position. She did not run for New York's attorney general, but rather succeeded Democratic former state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman when Schneiderman abruptly resigned in May. Schneiderman left office after the New Yorker published allegations that he had physically abused women.

Underwood inherited an investigation into the Trump Foundation that Schneiderman had started in 2016, responding to reporting on the charity by The Washington Post.

In June, Underwood filed the lawsuit.

"AG Underwood believes that there should be one set of rules for everyone -- no matter who they are," said Amy Spitalnick, a spokeswoman for Underwood, in a written message after Trump's tweets. …

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