In 2016, The Washington Post reported that the charity had committed several potential legal and ethical violations, including alleged self-dealing and possible tax evasion. Also in 2016, the New York State Attorney General's office notified the Trump Foundation that the foundation appeared to be in violation of New York laws regarding charities, ordering it to immediately cease its fundraising activities in New York. A Trump spokesman called the Attorney General's investigation a "partisan hit job". In response to mounting complaints, Trump's team announced in late December 2016 that the Trump Foundation would be dissolved to remove "even the appearance of any conflict with [his] role as President." According to an IRS filing in November 2017, the foundation intended to shut down and distribute its assets (about $970,000) to other charities. However, the New York Attorney General's office had to complete their ongoing investigation before the foundation could legally shut down, and in June 2018 they filed a civil suit against the foundation for $2.8 million in restitution and additional penalties. The suit names Trump himself as well as his adult children Donald Jr., Eric, and Ivanka.
During the rally, Trump spent approximately fifteen minutes commenting on the events in Charlottesville and criticizing the media for supposedly mischaracterizing his words, while omitting previous statements about the rally's "many sides" of culpability (a move that was later criticized as misleading). Trump also issued repeated attacks towards the media, accusing them of being "liars" and "sick people" responsible for creating "division" in the country. He accused activists seeking the removal of Confederate monuments of “trying to take away our history" and hinted at pardoning Joe Arpaio. Trump also made verbal attacks on both of Arizona's US Senators, Jeff Flake and John McCain. Additionally, Trump threatened to shutdown the U.S. Federal Government if he was unable to secure funding to construct a border wall, mentioned tensions with North Korea, accused Democrats of being "obstructionists", described his own restraint as being "very presidential", and declared that "at some point” the United States would "end up probably terminating the North American Free Trade Agreement.
The volume of the orders (90,000 banners between March and July, at just one factory) is not inconsistent with the activities of a major U.S. presidential election campaign, and it is therefore reasonable to question the identity of the customer(s) behind such orders. However, we’ve so far found no concrete evidence documenting who is responsible for these orders: merchandisers, the Trump campaign itself, Republican partisans, foreign entities, or some combination thereof.
Trump held his sixth campaign rally on July 25 at the Covelli Centre in Youngstown, Ohio. During the speech, Trump reveled in addressing an audience outside of the national capital. He also condemned "predators and criminal aliens" and called them "animals". Chicago Tribune writer Rex W. Huppke criticized this comment, comparing it to the previous day's remarks at the National Scout Jamboree. Trump also made remarks on the homicide rate in Chicago, and called on the mayor, Rahm Emanuel, to "get tough"; Emanuel responded the following day, stating: "It is not about being tough, it's about being smart and strategic."
Along with Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, if Trump is reelected, it would be the first time in American history that there have been four consecutive presidents who were elected to two terms. If Trump completed his second term on January 20, 2025, he would be 78 years old and would have become the oldest person to serve as president, surpassing Ronald Reagan (who was 77 when he left office in 1989).[a]