Donald Trump gatecrashed HIV kids charity event without giving a single penny
A report has raised question over Donald Trump’s claims of philanthropy.
A months-long investigation by the Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold found little evidence that Trump had personally given money to charitable causes despite the billionaire bragging about his own philanthropy.
Contacting more than 420 charities with a connection to Trump, The Post found he had given just one personal gift, of less than $10,000, since 2008.
In one of the most disturbing accounts, the story recalls how Trump gatecrashed a 1996 ribbon-cutting for a school for HIV-positive children run by the Association to Benefit Children.
Mr Trump turned up uninvited and forced his way into the limelight at the event, taking a seat in front of the cameras reserved for a major donor – without giving a single penny.
Hillary Clinton said: “Yesterday the Washington Post published a report that was truly stunning. It starts with the story of a ribbon-cutting back in 1996 for a nursery school serving children living with HIV and AIDS in New York.
“Now, let me say, this is important in part to remember. This is a story about children with HIV and AIDS. So there was a big celebration honouring the donors who had supported the nursery school, and all the kids and their families, for whom this was the most important thing you can imagine.
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“Because you know, back in the ‘90s, some of you remember. Right? Children weren’t welcomed in school.
“And then, unannounced and uninvited, guess who barges in? Donald Trump. He walks right up to the stage. He sat down in the seat that was being saved for a local developer who had made a generous donation.
“None of the people working for the charity knew why he was there. He wasn’t a donor at all. He had never given a single dollar to help build the school. He just wanted people to think he had. So he sat on the stage through the program, even posed for photographs, and when it was over, he got up and walked out.
“No explanation. No donation. Now really, who does that? What kind of person does that? Really?
“I mean, who pretends to help kids with HIV and AIDS in order to make themselves look good?”
The Post’s investigation confirmed Trump had never given to 420 charitable causes he was linked to – including the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, the AIDS Service Center and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.
In recent weeks, Hillary Clinton has repeatedly attacked her rival’s shifting stances on LGBT rights.
In a bid to attract support from evangelicals, Trump has claimed he would “consider” appointing ultra-conservative Supreme Court justices to repeal equal marriage, come out in favour of North Carolina’s anti-trans law, and confirmed he would sign a Republican-backed bill to directly permit religious homophobic discrimination – while his running mate Mike Pence has confirmed he would dismantle Barack Obama’s protections for LGBT people.