Is Donald Trump Racist? FBI Releases Documents In Housing Discrimination Investigation

The FBI investigated President Donald Trump’s real estate company for racial discrimination in the 1970s and Wednesday released nearly 400 pages of records documenting the two-year inquiry in response to Freedom of Information Act requests.The files contain...

Is Donald Trump Racist? FBI Releases Documents In Housing Discrimination Investigation

The FBI investigated President Donald Trump’s real estate company for racial discrimination in the 1970s and Wednesday released nearly 400 pages of records documenting the two-year inquiry in response to Freedom of Information Act requests.

The files contain dozens of interviews with tenants, management and employees of the company Trump ran with his father, Fred, most of whom said they were unaware of any discrimination. The records, which were heavily redacted for privacy reasons, also include interviews with African-American and Puerto Rican apartment seekers who were told no flats were available while white applicants were offered leases.

A former doorman told investigators he was instructed to tell black people who came to his building “that the rent was twice as much as it really was in order that he could not afford the apartment.”

“Fred Trump told me not to rent to blacks,” a rental supervisor told investigators.

Another employee said the rental office often wrote racial codes on rental applications.

The investigation was triggered by complaints forwarded by the National Urban League.

The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division sued the Trump Management Co. in October 1973 alleging violations of the Fair Housing Act by systematically barring blacks and Puerto Ricans from the 14,000 apartments they operated. The case was one of the biggest housing discrimination suits brought at the time.

Trump was 27 years old at the time and just four years out of college. He held a press conference calling the government allegations “outrageous lies,” the Washington Post reported.

Trump and his father filed a $100 million countersuit alleging defamation. The suit eventually was settled with a 1975 consent decree in which the Trumps made no admission of guilt but agreed to avoid discriminatory practices and take out ads saying their properties were equal opportunity.

In his 1987 book, Trump said all his managers did was try to weed out “welfare cases, white or black.”

The document dump came the same day the president railed against leaks to the media that forced the resignation of national security adviser Michael Flynn Monday night.

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