Friday, November 25, 2016

The Work the Father of Donald Trump's New White House Counsel Did for Trump

Donald Trump has named Don McGahn as his White House Counsel.

In April when Trump was suinh him handle campaign election legal work, The Washington Post explored the work that McGahn's father, Paddy, did for Trump:
The night Donald Trump notched his first win as a presidential candidate, he took the stage in New Hampshire between Ivanka and Melania and lit into the special interests that he declared had corrupted Washington — the company town that Trump, marketer extraordinaire, has ruthlessly trashed to the benefit of his own brand.

“These are lobbyists, these are people that don’t necessarily love our country,” said Trump. “We have to stop it. We have to stop it.”

Over Trump’s shoulder, another ruddy-faced man licked his teeth and flattened his lips into a straight line. He appeared out of place on that stage, and he seemed to know it. His face oscillated between forced smiles and blank stares, like Dustin Hoffman at the end of “The Graduate.”

This would be Donald F. McGahn II, the former chairman of the Federal Election Commission, Trump’s campaign lawyer and unofficial liaison to the Washington establishment his client was gleefully trashing....

McGahn is one of the top election lawyers in the country, a job so highly specialized that its practitioners are almost unavoidably “Washington insiders” by definition....
The chatter among his fellow Republican operatives hit a fever pitch when McGahn made his onstage debut with Trump. “It’s one thing to represent him as a lawyer,” said one, “but why would he lend his visual credibility to Trump in such a way that could damage his reputation for the long term?”
Then again, if any member of the “establishment” would be willing to gamble on a Donald Trump presidency, there are plenty of reasons why it would be Don McGahn, a young Donald Trump had his sights set on a different kingdom to conquer.

Atlantic City had recently passed legislation to allow casinos, and Trump wanted a piece of the action. Doing so required a power broker, someone who understood the intricacies of both the law and local political forces. So Trump turned to a portly Irish American lawyer named Patrick McGahn — “Paddy” to his friends, and Uncle Pat to his nephew Don.

Paddy, the son of a shopkeeper and recipient of three Purple Hearts from the Korean War, was known to have the best professional connections in town, and the high legal fees worthy of them. As Trump gobbled up real estate, Paddy paved the way.

When Trump was seeking city approval to build an employee parking lot at Trump Castle, Paddy threw a party for the mayor’s wife, inviting about 16 people aboard the Trump Princess yacht and taking them out to a dinner at one of the casino’s gourmet restaurants, according to news reports at the time.

When Trump purchased property from two brothers with Mafia ties, he paid double the value, according to Wayne Barrett’s book, “Trump: The Deals and the Downfall,” and put the title in the name of Paddy’s secretary before transferring it to one of his corporate entities.

There was no problem too big or too small for Paddy, who once represented Trump in a fight with a vendor selling hot dogs outside a Trump property. Trump was so appreciative that he named a cocktail lounge for him at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City: Paddy’s Saloon.

The dealmaker didn’t even mind paying top price, according to John R. O’Donnell, former president of the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino. In his book, “Trumped!,” O’Donnell recounted the time he complained to his boss about McGahn’s exorbitant fees.

“Jack, I’m 13 and 0 with this guy,” Trump said. “What do you want me to do? He gets things done in this town.”

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