Buying of the President

Published — June 16, 2015 Updated — October 21, 2015 at 3:50 pm ET

9 things to know about Donald Trump

John Locher/AP

Introduction

Donald Trump built a real estate empire.

He’s owned an eponymous airline, luxury vodka brand and clothing line.

Reality television show? Check.

He’s has even grappled his way into the WWE Hall of Fame, before trying, and failing, to buy the National Football League’s Buffalo Bills.

But never — despite crying political wolf more times than, perhaps, any other modern American — has Trump officially run for political office.

Until now.

Here’s more on Trump’ political and financial history as he strides (seriously!) into the Republican party’s claustrophobic presidential candidate field:

  • Donald Trump’s estimated worth is $4.1 billion — and it might be even more — meaning he could conceivably self-finance his presidential run.
  • Since the late 1980s, Donald Trump has personally donated only a bit less money to federal Democrats (about $330,000) than Republicans (about $490,000), according to OpenSecrets.org.
  • Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, Harry Reid, Anthony Weiner — they’re among the many Democrats to whom Donald Trump has contributed cash.
  • Donald Trump once donated money to other 2016 presidential candidates or their political committees, including George Pataki, Mike Huckabee and Clinton.
  • It’s not 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. But Donald Trump already occupies some nice digs at 1100 Pennsylvania Ave.
  • The Democratic Governors Association’s based one of its recent fundraising appeals on Donald Trump’s belief that President Barack Obama wasn’t likely born in the United States.
  • Donald Trump formed a presidential exploratory committee in April, allowing him to raise money. But he’s done this before — in 1999 — as a prospective Reform Party presidential candidate.
  • Think running for president is hard? Wrestler “Stone Cold” Steve Austin “stunned” Donald Trump at Wrestlemania 23.
  • Even if Donald Trump never leads the United States of America, he’ll still be the leader of the Miss USA beauty pageant.

Sources: Center for Public Integrity reporting, Center for Responsive Politics, Federal Election Commission, Forbes, National Institute on Money in State Politics.

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