The Trump International Hotel, Washington DC
Janhvi Bhojwani | CNBC
A House committee urged a federal agency Thursday to consider terminating the lease on a Washington, DC, hotel held by former President Donald Trump and his business.
The House Committee on Oversight and Reform cited accounting firm Mazars’ recent announcement that it is dropping the Trump Organization as a client and stating that a decade of the company’s financial statements cannot be relied on as accurate.
“New information, including that former President Trump may have submitted inaccurate financial information to the federal government to obtain this lease and that he stands to reap millions in profit from selling the lease, reinforce the serious ethical and legal concerns previously raised by the Committee, “the Democratic committee leaders wrote in a letter to the General Services Administration obtained by NBC News.
The House committee last year disclosed financial filings showing that the Trump International Hotel in DC lost more than $ 70 million from 2016 to 2020.
Mazars had submitted those filings to the GSA, the landlord of the historic building known as the Old Post Office.
“We request that you consider terminating the Old Post Office Building lease to former President Trump and the Trump Organization under the authority provided in Article 27 of the lease, and end, once-and-for-all, the grave damage this inappropriate lease has done to presidential ethics and integrity in government contracting, “wrote Oversight Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, DN.Y., and government operations subcommittee Chair Gerald Connolly, D-Va., in the letter.
They first noted that GSA had launched a review of the Trump Organization’s plans to sell the lease for $ 375 million, saying that figure “appears to represent a significant premium over market rates.”
That deal, if approved, would not Trump himself roughly $ 76 million, Maloney and Connolly wrote.
The Oversight leaders also pointed to Mazars ‘disavowal of 10 years’ worth of financial statements prepared for Trump. The firm said those documents “should no longer be relied upon.”
The decision from Mazars was revealed by the office of New York Attorney General Letitia James. Her office on Thursday asked a New York judge to order Trump and his business – as well as Donald Trump Jr. and Ivanka Trump – to comply with subpoenas for documents and testimony.
Trump, while competing to win the Old Post Office lease, submitted to GSA three years of statements that Mazars had compiled, the committee said.
The oversight panel had called those statements “incomplete, misleading, and in violation of the express terms of the solicitation” due to “significant omissions” in Trump’s listing of assets and liabilities.
Those three years’ worth of statements preceded the years that Mazars has now retracted, but those earlier statements “contain potential misrepresentations” about Trump’s assets “that are similar to those identified by state investigators,” Maloney and Connolly said.