New York City will cut trade ties with the Trump organization, becoming the latest in a series of partners to get rid of the president and his family empire in the wake of last week’s violent insurgency on Capitol Hill.
“New York City will have nothing to do with the Trump organization anymore,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said Wednesday, saying Mr. Trump’s role in inciting a crowd to storm the Capitol building as Congress certified Joe Biden’s election victory provided legal and moral justification.
“The lawyers looked at him. It was as clear as a bell: this is a reason for breaking contracts, ”said de Blasio.
The Trump Organization has contracts to operate two ice rinks and a carousel in Central Park, as well as a golf course in the Bronx. The transactions generate around $ 17 million per year for the company, according to de Blasio.
Although the financial figures may be modest, the rinks have special symbolic value for the Assets. The President took over the renovation of the ramshackle Wollman Rink in a cash-strapped town in the mid-1980s. His ability to renovate the rink, in the shadow of Midtown’s skyscrapers, ahead and under the budget was a publicity stunt.
In a statement, Eric Trump, the president’s son who helps run the family business, said the city had no right to terminate contracts and would owe the Trump Organization $ 30 million if she did. “It is nothing more than political discrimination and we plan to fight it vigorously,” he said.
Mr de Blasio’s announcement came as the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives open procedure Wednesday to impeach Mr. Trump for his role in last week’s insurgency, which left five people dead after thousands of the president’s supporters ransacked the seat of American democracy. This event sparked shock and outrage – even among many, but not all, Republican politicians who had been close allies of Mr. Trump.
In the process, political donors and business alike moved away from the president and the Trump organization. This poses a threat to an already struggling real estate empire due to the stigma attached to the Trump brand and a historic pandemic that is devastating hotels, businesses and offices across the country.
Cushman & Wakefield, one of the largest commercial property brokers in the United States, informed the Trumps on Tuesday that it would no longer work with them. The company has served the family for decades, renting out its properties at 40 Wall Street and Trump Tower, among other assignments.
“Cushman & Wakefield have made the decision to no longer do business with the Trump organization,” a company spokesperson said.
The Trump organization reportedly contacted other parties on Wednesday to gauge their interest in representing their properties in New York.
Even before the insurgency, the company struggled to attract U.S. companies to its commercial properties, brokers say, forcing it instead to rely on foreign tenants. Some predict that the Trump organization could face a wave of lawsuits from tenants who may be unable to sublet the units they have purchased or rented at Trump properties due to association with the president.
“There is going to be litigation to follow,” said one broker.
The Trump organization has at least $ 1.1 billion in debt, according to government financial disclosures, of which about $ 900 million will mature over the next four years. Much of the debt is against buildings and golf courses.
The professional golf association started the flight of Mr Trump when he announced he would move the 2022 PGA Championship from the President’s Club to Bedminster, New Jersey, citing the risk to his brand. Mr. Trump, an avid golfer, had spent millions of dollars to host what would have been his first major golf course in the hopes it would cast a lucrative halo on the club.
Two banks that have long worked with the Trumps, Deutsche Bank and Signature Bank, followed suit, saying they would end their relationship with Mr. Trump. Deutsche has become Mr. Trump’s lender of choice, financing hotels and golf courses, after other U.S. banks shut it down following a series of bankruptcies. Signature once counted Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter, as a member of its board.
Mr. Trump’s real estate business, which spawned the reality TV career that ultimately launched him into politics, is built around a brand meant to signify opulence and success.
Still, the attacks on the Capitol have tarnished him in recent days – so much so that he was unable to persuade Bill Belichick, the New England Patriots football team coach, to accept a Presidential Medal of Freedom from him.
“Above all, I am an American citizen with great reverence for our nation’s values, freedom and democracy,” Belichick said in a statement, triggering the president’s offer.