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Donald Trump's extensive tax fraud is the subject of two separate investigations in New York, and Ivanka -- who is directly implicated in one of the forms of fraud -- is not happy. Both investigations have recently started looking at the consulting fees Trump used to get tax write-offs, with some of the payments apparently going to Ivanka even though she was working for the Trump Organization at the time.
New York State Attorney General Letitia James is carrying out a civil investigation focused on the Trump Organization, which kicked off after longtime Trump personal lawyer Michael Cohen testified to Congress that Trump strategically inflates or understates the value of his assets to get bank loans, in the former case, and reduce taxes, in the latter case. But James has since found a whole lot more to work with. Meanwhile, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance is carrying out a criminal investigation started with Trump's hush money payments to Stormy Daniels, and has predictably expanded.
The consulting payments emerged as an issue after The New York Times obtained copies of years of the tax returns that Trump had kept hidden, and some of the consulting payments matched up with payments Ivanka had disclosed as part of her White House work. As former director of the Office of Government Ethics Walter Shaub tweeted, "I chuckle each time I think about the fact that the NY authorities wouldn't know about the $747,622 payment to Ivanka that they're investigating if not for the nepotism that led her to file a financial disclosure report as a White House staffer. Now that's just funny."
Ivanka is not chuckling.
"This is harassment pure and simple," she tweeted, linking the New York Times article about the investigations. "This 'inquiry' by NYC democrats is 100% motivated by politics, publicity and rage. They know very well that there's nothing here and that there was no tax benefit whatsoever. These politicians are simply ruthless."
Do they know that, though? Does anyone know that there's nothing here? Why is the Trump family fighting every subpoena and hiding every tax record if they're so sure they're innocent and can prove it?
Of course, the consulting payments to Ivanka are just part of a much larger complex of Trump family tax fraud -- and when Donald Trump is forced kicking and screaming out of the White House, these investigations are what he has to look forward to. No wonder Ivanka is so worried.