Despite Donald Trump describing himself as an "ardent philanthropist" and boasting publicly of his charitable giving, the Washington Post "has not been able to verify many of Trump's boasts about his philanthropy." A months-long investigation by the Post shows Trump has a habit of taking credit for donations he never made or that were made by other people. The exhaustively researched piece also uncovered a number of unforgettable anecdotes about Trump's past run-ins with charity:
- In 1996, an uninvited Trump crashed a benefit for children with AIDS, sat on the stage, posed for photos, and then left without donating anything.
- The largest donation ever made by the Trump Foundation was $264,631. It was used to fix up a fountain outside the windows of the Plaza Hotel in New York. Trump owns the Plaza Hotel.
- The German-American Hall of Fame paid "20-some thousand" to Trump to rent out space at Trump Tower for a 2012 ceremony in which Trump was being inducted. Afterward, Trump donated $1,000.
- Trump agreed to star in a music video for the band Precious Metal in exchange for a $10,000 donation to charity. After filming, he demanded a "Trump kind of donation" of $250,000 instead. The band refused and re-shot the video, which Trump then publicly criticized.
- A chess team's bake sale came up $5,000 short of its goal while Trump was serving as "principal for a day" at a school in the Bronx. He gave the students a fake million-dollar bill. Then he "gave them $200 in real money and drove away in a limousine."
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