Trump's Looming Debt Called a 'Time Bomb'

He appears to be personally on the hook for hundreds of millions in next few years
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2020 8:44 AM CDT

(Newser) – One big takeaway from the New York Times report on President Trump's finances is that he has paid very little federal income tax in recent years, reportedly because his businesses are doing so badly. But another aspect of it also is drawing attention: The president's looming debt. Coverage:

  • The issue: Back in the '90s, Trump got into big financial trouble when he personally guaranteed hundreds of millions of dollars in loans that went south, writes David Leonhardt of the Times. Trump has since called that a mistake, but he seems to have done it again, writes Leonhardt, who is culling big takeaways from the report: "He appears to be responsible for loans totaling $421 million, most of which is coming due within four years. Should he win re-election, his lenders could be placed in the unprecedented position of weighing whether to foreclose on a sitting president."
  • A critic's concern: This looming debt is a "time bomb" and a bigger issue than tax avoidance, writes David Atkins at the Washington Monthly. What he finds "terrifying" is "the mystery of who owns Trump’s outlandish debts, and the degree of secret power they may be wielding over the country." The analysis, highly critical of the president, digs into the implications.

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