Alternatives for Girls featured on Katie Couric's "Challenge for Change"
Greg: "Criticized Kaine for accepting $160,000 worth of gifts... Trump said: "To me, it's a big problem ... how do you take all these gifts?" Those who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones, Mr. Trump......... "Trump swam in mob-infested waters in early years as an NYC developer. As billionaire developer Donald Trump became the toast of New York in the 1980s, he often attributed his rise to salesmanship and verve. “Deals are my art form,” he wrote. But there is `another aspect to his success that he doesn’t often discuss. Throughout his early career, Trump routinely gave large campaign contributions to politicians who held sway over his projects, and he worked with mob-controlled companies and unions to build them. A Washington Post review of court records, testimony by Trump and other accounts that have been out of the public eye for decades offers insights into his rise. He was never accused of illegality, and observers of the time say that working with the mob-related figures and politicos came with the territory. Trump declined repeated requests to comment. One state examination in the late 1980s of the New York City construction industry concluded that “official corruption is part of an environment in which developers and contractors cultivate and seek favors from public officials at all levels.” Trump gave so generously to political campaigns that he sometimes lost track of the amounts, documents show. In 1985 alone, he contributed about $150,000 to local candidates, the equivalent of $330,000 today. Officials with the New York State Organized Crime Task Force later said that Trump, while not breaking any laws, “circumvented” state limits on individual and corporate contributions “by spreading his payments among eighteen subsidiary companies.”