But now investigators are investigating whether Trump inappropriately inflated assets, evaded taxes, and paid out women who allegedly violated campaign finance laws. Women have filed lawsuits accusing him of molesting and assaulting her. Lenders look for hundreds of millions of dollars in loans that can be repaid.
And he has lost the legal immunity that the presidency gives him. He lost the White House bullying pulpit. He can lose the GOP.
So Trump has to plan how to make the money he needs, keep the attention he craves, and dodge the authorities investigating him. And according to Republicans familiar with the situation, he’s already started doing it.
He could start his own conservative network or invest in an existing one, such as Newsmax, whose majority owner is a close friend, Chris Ruddy. Another option is One American News Network, a Trump praise he frequently lauds. Then there is Sinclair Broadcasting, which owns local television stations across the country.
Or maybe Trump is starting his own political party. People in its orbit teased another presidential campaign against Joe Biden as early as 2024 in the days leading up to the race.
The chatter alone is central to keeping the Trump brand alive as he faces lawsuits, debt collectors, and investigators. He also encourages gossip with lawsuits and tells of claims that will challenge the election results.
“When did you have a president, with the exception of Nixon, who was exposed to that gigantic shadow the moment you left office?” said presidential historian Michael Bechloss, recalling the possible charges that were brought against Richard Nixon when he stepped down during the Watergate scandal.
But first, there are some business decisions Trump must face after Biden, Trump’s Democratic rival, was declared the winner on Saturday and received the 270 electoral votes required to win the presidency.
Trump has to decide whether to go back to work Namesake company, which includes more than 500 companies including hotels, resorts, and golf clubs. The Trump organization is believed to have lost millions of dollars during the coronavirus and Forbes outbreak Estimates Trump’s net worth fell by $ 1 billion during the global pandemic.
Trump biographer Michael D’Antonio said Trump had used the opportunities of the media all his life, be it the New York tabloid or “The Apprentice”.
“I think it’s inevitable that he has a media platform, ”he said. “Now almost everyone has the opportunity to broadcast almost free of charge. I think people would see Trump spontaneously blooming out of any outlet. That will appeal to him a lot. “
When Trump expected to lose to Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in 2016, according to one Republican, he had planned to start a media company.
But now that he’s president, some Republicans have said he will be tempted to stick to politics, be it through the GOP or through his own party.
Not everyone in the Republican Party will welcome him. The GOP is torn between conservatives, who are passionate about Trump, and moderates, who want to distance themselves but are holding back due to fears of a backlash from Trump’s grassroots. The direction in which the party shifts could depend on whether Trump loses political relevance after leaving office, as former Presidents Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush did it.
“He brought out people that the party must surely capture, but are they going to stay without him?” said a former Trump aide. “The party needs some of him, but not all of him.”
Even if the party doesn’t want all of Trump – or even some of him – that wouldn’t stop Trump from pushing another run in the White House. After all, the GOP didn’t really want him the first time. Mick Mulvaney, who served as Chief of Staff of the White House until that year and now even serves as Special Envoy for Northern Ireland predicted Trump would do just that.
“I would absolutely expect the President to remain involved in politics and absolutely put him on the shortlist of likely candidates to run for 2024,” he said at an event hosted by the Institute for International and European Affairs, an Irish think tank .
Trump, who teased a White House offer for decades before finally standing for election in 2016, went through an initial term marked by impeachment, ubiquitous investigations, backward leaks, memoirs from former employees, celebrity resignations and layoffs, and crises following a crisis in his own own production.
However, his tumultuous time as president is not necessarily a commitment to future political ambitions. Instead, the bigger factor could be the litany of problems he will face after leaving office.
While at the White House, Trump was largely protected from criminal charges as the Justice Department long had precedent not to indict a sitting president. But once he leaves, he will face a number of investigations that could affect him directly.
The New York attorney general’s office is investigating whether Trump and his company misrepresented assets in financial statements for credit, tax breaks, and economic benefits.
And Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance is still reviewing Trump’s payouts to two women to keep them calm over extramarital affairs with Trump during the 2016 campaign. Trump’s ex-attorney Michael Cohen has already been jailed for payments in violation of the Campaign Funding Act. Trump himself was involved in the program, and prosecutors said he directed Cohen to make the hush money payments. There has long been speculation that Trump might file charges after leaving office, although that is far from certain.
Vance’s request can also be wider than the hush money payments, possibly including a tax crime and banking and insurance fraud investigation, according to court records.
Since both probes are state and not federal investigations, Trump cannot apologize on the way to the door.
Even so, no president has been charged with a crime – apart from Ulysses S. Grant, who was arrested for speeding in his horse and buggy – and it is possible that Trump would receive special settlement as a former president. And in particular, after his resignation from Gerald Ford, Nixon received a preventive pardon to protect the ex-president from legal problems.
Regardless, Trump’s finances will soon become a focus.
Trump has to pay back $ 421 million in loans he personally guaranteed, much of it to foreign creditors, which one says will be most due in the next four years detection in the New York Times with details of his personal and business tax returns. The investigation also found that Trump attempted a $ 72 million refund from the IRS in 2010 by claiming losses of $ 1.4 billion in 2008 and 2009, sparking years of scrutiny that could cost him millions in back taxes.
But Trump has been bypassed again and again, has turned away from legal, financial and personal problems.
Trump has survived impeachment proceedings, numerous allegations of sexual misconduct, and thousands of lawsuits. While he’s been through adversity himself – bankruptcies, settlements with authorities for alleged misconduct at his charitable foundation and the now-closed Trump University – he’s always remained unbowed.
Trump biographer Tim O’Brien said Trump has been isolated from the consequences of his actions all his life because of his wealth, fame and presidency. This could extend to his post-presidency: “Will he be given another hiatus because of those lifesavers that were always under his arms?”