Evangelical leader and Trump-devotee Jerry Falwell, Jr. personally approved the $1.2 million no money down sale of a Liberty University owned fitness center to a personal trainer he and his wife use. The terms of the sale include a guaranteed $650,000 “lease-back” in which Liberty University committed to pay for nine-years of use of the facility’s tennis courts. It also included a very low 3% interest rate, financed by Liberty University.
“Around 2011, Falwell, president of Liberty University in Virginia, and his wife, Rebecca, began personal fitness training sessions with Benjamin Crosswhite, then a 23-year-old recent Liberty graduate,” Reuters reports. “Now, after a series of university real estate transactions signed by Falwell, Crosswhite owns a sprawling 18-acre racquet sports and fitness facility on former Liberty property. Last year, a local bank approved a line of credit allowing Crosswhite’s business to borrow as much as $2 million against the property.”
This is not the first time Falwell has extended tremendous financial support to a young man he and his wife support.
“A Florida lawsuit brought public scrutiny to a relationship between the Falwells and Giancarlo Granda, a young man they befriended while he was working as a pool attendant at a luxury Miami Beach hotel and later backed in a business venture involving a youth hostel,” Reuters adds. “Falwell filed an affidavit in 2018 saying he used his own wealth to lend $1.8 million to the $4.65 million project with Granda.”
And U.S. President Trump’s now-jailed fixer, Michael Cohen, has said he helped the Falwells suppress racy personal photos, as Reuters reported this May, in the months before Cohen persuaded Falwell to endorse Trump’s 2016 White House bid. There is no evidence that Cohen’s efforts to suppress the photos were a quid pro quo for Falwell’s vital political backing.
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes notes: “Aside from, um, the eyebrow raising aspects between the lines, this is just a SHOCKINGLY corrupt use of university funds.”
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Trump Boasts Amy Coney Barrett Was ‘Toying’ With ‘Evil’ Democrats
President Donald Trump is bragging that his nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, the supposedly non-partisan and non-political branch of government, was “toying” with the Democratic U.S. Senators on the Judiciary Committee this week.
He also took a swipe, Thursday afternoon at a campaign re-election rally in North Carolina, at the opposing party, calling Democrats “evil.”
“She’s toying with those Democrat, evil people. They’re evil”
“She’s toying with those Democrat, evil people. They’re evil” — Trump on Amy Coney Barrett pic.twitter.com/NDbjM4DqPC
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 15, 2020
Judge Barrett did in fact refuse to answer dozens of questions, if not more, from Democratic Senators wanting to know her legal positions on a wide variety of critical topics, including abortion, same-sex marriage, and voting rights.
The hearing, which concluded earlier Thursday, became so contentious this week that Barrett tried to even not answer questions about which the answers are basic facts, or matters of basic law that are not being adjudicated or seriously questioned.
CNN legal analyst Elliot Williams called Barrett’s “failure to give clear answers about her views” both “alarming” and “a new low.”
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