Donald Trump discloses that Rep. Charles Rangel met the real estate mogul face to face to ask for $5 million for a building project in New York City — and says Rangel is lucky to escape jail time for his misdeeds.
In an interview with the Fox Channel’s “Fox & Friends” on Thursday
morning, Trump said Rangel came to his office to ask for the money for what Trump called a “civic center at a school” — no doubt a reference to the planned Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service at City College of New York.
“You know what I said? I said no,” Trump declared.
“It’s called good judgment. Somebody asked me why did I say no. I said because I have better places to spend my money.”
Trump said he was among several potential donors who received a solicitation for money for the project on Rangel’s congressional stationery.
Asked if it felt like a “shakedown,” Trump said simply: “No.”
The House ethics committee has said Rangel’s fundraising and financial misdeeds justify censure, the most severe penalty short of expulsion. Among the panel’s findings, Rangel filed misleading financial disclosure reports for a decade, leaving out hundreds of thousands of dollars in assets he owned.
“I feel bad for Rangel,” Trump told hosts Gretchen Carlson, Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade.
“I’ve known him for a long time. It’s too bad what’s happened to him.”
But he added: “In certain ways he’s very lucky. If it happened to you, you or you, it’s called jail time.”
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