Trump's hotel in Washington has been a controversial topic since taking office. Trump continues to own his company, which, among other things, operates the hotel, resulting in charges of conflict of interest. Several lawsuits allege that Trump violates the constitutional ban on "allowances" or payments by foreign governments when foreign government officials visit the hotel.
The company rents the building, the pavilion of the Alte Post, from the General Government Services Administration (GSA), but the terms permit the sale of the lease under certain conditions.
Trump's son, Eric Trump, told the Wall Street Journal, which first reported the sale: "People refuse that we make so much money for the hotel, so maybe we're ready to sell. Officials of the Trump Organization and the JLL declined to comment.
The President recently called the issue of whether foreign spending in the hotel violated the Constitution as "fake emoluments clause. His statement was part of a discussion on his decision to hold the summit of the world leaders of the group of Seven 2020 in his golf resort Trump National Doral in Miami Florida. Days after the announcement of this plan, the White House reversed the course following criticism from across the political spectrum.
The first weeks before Trump's election victory in 201
6, the hotel became a popular destination for clients and clients who followed the president's policies and adhered to US President-led Republican campaigns for fundraising , Christian groups for conventions and conservative authors for book parties. Members of Trump's Cabinet were often seen there, and Trump was there 23 times as president, according to the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.
But the estate also suffered from the unwillingness of many mainstream corporations. Embassies and associations booked business there and narrowed the pool of applicants to fill the hotel's huge ballroom and its 263 guest rooms.
The hotel's dealings with foreign governments led to several lawsuits, congressional investigations and investigations. In three lawsuits winding through the federal court system, the plaintiffs allege that Trump violates the foreign clause of the constitution, which prevents the president from accepting gifts or payments from foreign governments. Which government officials – from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia and others Nations – have shops in the hotel booked? The judge in a case in which the attorney general of DC and Maryland sued the president strictly limited the arguments to Trump's hotel in DC that the president does not violate the constitution by charging market rates to foreign governments. The Trump organization has also been donating money to the US Treasury Department for the past two years. This money is the sum of the profits received from foreign governments and political leaders.
The House Democrats investigate the hotel project more aggressively. The House Committee, which oversees the GSA, issued a summons to the agency on Thursday for financial documents, legal endorsements and correspondence related to the project, including material on any communication between the GSA and Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump or Eric Trump.
Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), Who issued the subpoena, released a statement on Friday calling the potential sale a "good starting point" to dispel ethical concerns, but said he was "skeptical that this latest development no attempt is made to achieve a massive profit that directly benefits the Trump family, so I will follow closely this marketing attempt. "
When Trump wanted to offer the deal in 2012, he told the Washington Post he planned to do so in the long run
"We will not sell any of the real estate." The following year, Trump signed a 60-year lease with three 10-year options for the building, giving his company control to Ivanka Trump, then senior executive in the firm Her father's real estate company and now the White House's senior adviser was so hot on the building that at the time she suggested to the GSA official, her daughter Arabella Rose, at that time none 5 months old, where should one day be supervised.
Trump's company may sell the lease under certain conditions and with the approval of the GSA under the leasing documents. The company is required to keep the lease for a "minimum holding period", but the GSA has not announced how long that period will last.
Because the sale would take place while Trump is in office – and not before he has taken office Just as previous presidents have sold private interests, every business can raise its own ethical questions: for example, foreign investors and sovereign wealth funds often buy US securities. Real estate, especially hotels, and may give rise to concern about meeting the foreign compensation clause.
] Since the GSA would have to approve the deal while Trump is president, critics could also raise questions about whether taxpayers are getting a fair deal.
A GSA spokeswoman did not respond to requests for comments that they provided the House Committee with thousands of documents and it is up to the courts to determine if there have been any compensation violations.
It is difficult to determine how well the hotel performs and what role this played in deciding to sell. Financial information on other Trump branded properties in New York and Chicago has shown signs of declining business since Trump took office, but the GSA has not published financial information on the DC properties.
Trump is financially huge on the project. He defeated ten other competitors and offered $ 200 million to renovate the building, far more than other bidders were willing to offer. He borrowed $ 170 million from Deutsche Bank. According to the journal, his company aims for a sales price of around 500 million US dollars.