Donald Trump is nearing a $20-$25 million settlement in the fraud lawsuits by the victims of his Trump University scam . . . But what about those 73 other lawsuits?
On Friday, The New York Daily News broke the story.
‘In a complete turnaround from his previous position, President-elect Donald Trump is nearing a settlement of the fraud cases brought in New York and California involving his now defunct for-profit Trump University, the Daily News has learned.’
These lawsuits from New York and California allege students got tricked into paying as much as $35,000 in Trump University “tuition” to learn his real estate secrets and get rich quick. And of course, the final agreement will allow Donald Trump to get off without admitting to any wrongdoing.
‘Under the emerging deal being negotiated by Trump’s lawyers, New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and the law firm that brought a class action lawsuit regarding Trump University in California, the president-elect will agree to pay between $20 million and $25 million to settle the matter, a source with knowledge of the situation said.’
Reuters adds that both New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and the U.S. District “Mexican Judge” Gonzalo Curiel from San Diego have urged the victims to settle.
‘As Attorney General Schneiderman has long said, he has always been open to a settlement that fairly compensates the many victims of Trump University who have been waiting years for a resolution.’
One of the California lawsuits was scheduled for a court hearing next week. Obviously, both Curiel and Schneiderman know these lawsuits won’t go very far with Donald Trump in the White House and want to ensure his victims at least get some of their money back so they can move on with their lives.
But settling the Trump University cases is a danged good thing for the president-elect, as well. Those RICO charges hanging over his head for criminal racketeering would have made even the most staunch Republican wonder why anyone even cared about Hillary Clinton’s emails.
As Bipartisan Report explained back in June, criminal racketing charges are serious stuff.
‘Low is suing Trump and Trump University in a standard class-action lawsuit, whereas Cohen is going after the business mogul through a provision of the RICO Act. The RICO Act, Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, that Cohen is using to target Trump is a hell of a lot more serious. Essentially, Cohen views Trump University as a criminal operation, with Trump himself as the head of a racketeering scheme.
There’s just one problem . . . While settling these three highly-publicized lawsuits must take a huge load off Donald Trump’s mind, our new president-elect still has at least 72 other pending lawsuits. In October, USA Today reported:
‘Just two weeks before Election Day, at least 75 of the 4,000-plus lawsuits involving Trump and his businesses remain open, according to an ongoing, nationwide analysis of state and federal court records by USA TODAY.’
But wait . . . Aren’t U.S. presidents protected from lawsuits? Not exactly. CBS News justice reporter Paula reed explained:
‘Well, some people say, well aren’t you protected from lawsuits if you’re president. You’re only protected from lawsuits connected to your duties as president. You are not protected from lawsuits in your private life.’
However, presidents do get a lot of leeway. Thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court precedent, judges will defer to a sitting president’s schedule. Which, in effect, could allow Donald Trump to delay any court cases for four (dear god, please not eight) years.
— Paula Reid (@PaulaReidCBS) November 18, 2016
Watch: Donald Trump to settle Trump University lawsuits for $20-25 Million.
Featured image: New York Daily News via Getty Images.