Speed Reads

Mr. moneybags

Donald Trump used $12,000 of charity money to buy himself a Tim Tebow helmet

Donald Trump has drawn frequent criticism over apparently being far less generous than he claims to be, but perhaps this story takes the cake: He once used charity money to buy himself a signed Tim Tebow helmet and jersey.

This all went down during a live auction at a charity fundraiser in Palm Beach four years ago. Trump got into a bidding war over the Tim Tebow helmet, eventually agreeing to pay $12,000 for it, according to The Washington Post.

But Trump didn't actually pay with his own money.

Instead, the Susan G. Komen organization — the breast-cancer nonprofit that hosted the party — got a $12,000 payment from another nonprofit, the Donald J. Trump Foundation.

Trump himself sent no money (In fact, a Komen spokesperson said, Trump has never given a personal gift of cash to the Komen organization). He paid the bill with money from a charity he founded in 1987, but which is largely stocked with other people's money. Trump is the foundation's president. But, at the time of the auction, Trump had given none of his own money to the foundation for three years running. [The Washington Post]

Experts say that depending on what came of the helmet, Trump could have even violated the IRS's rules. But perhaps the most depressing part of this whole story is what that same helmet and jersey are valued at now — read it all over at The Washington Post.