WASHINGTON — A group of religious leaders and retired judges filed a complaint today with the D.C. Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration to take away the Trump International Hotel’s liquor license.
The reason, they assert in the 27-page filing, is a violation of D.C. Code regulating liquor licenses, which requires that all applicants be “of good character and generally fit for the responsibilities of licensure.”
“Donald Trump, the true and actual owner of the Trump International Hotel, is not a person of good character. The Trump International Hotel nonetheless currently holds a Class C/H license issued by the Board. Thus, pursuant to D.C. Code § 25-447, the undersigned residents of theDistrict of Columbia request that the Board investigate Mr. Trump’s lack of good character and require the hotel’s licensee, Trump Old Post Office LLC, to appear before the Board to show cause why its license to sell and serve alcoholic beverages at The Trump International Hotel should not be revoked,” the complaint states.
“Although the Board’s ‘good character’ investigations typically occur at the time of license application or renewal, the egregious conduct set forth below, including the many recent events described in this Complaint, necessitate the Board’s issuance of an order to show cause at this time. The Board owes it to the public to investigate the owner’s lack of good character now.”
The complaint notes that although Trump does not maintain an active leadership role at the hotel, “he is the ultimate owner of the Revocable Trust which ultimately owns the licensee.”
The complainants are retired Magistrate Judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia Joan Goldfrank, inactive Senior U.S. District Court Judge for the District of Columbia Henry H. Kennedy, Jr., Senior Pastor at the Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church in Washington Rev. William Lamar IV, former chairwoman of the White House Council on Faith and Neighborhood Partnerships Rev. Jennifer Butler, General Secretary and Chief Administrative Officer of the Progressive National Baptist Convention in Washington Rev. Timothy Tee Boddie, ExecutiveDirector and President of Interfaith Alliance Rabbi Jack Moline, and Orthodox Rabbi Aaron Potek.
Good character, the complaint argues, “involves an evaluation of an individual’s moral and ethical qualities, including such virtues as honesty, integrity, and how a person treats others, particularly those less fortunate and less powerful.” It “limits its focus to only certain, egregious evidence of Mr. Trump’s lack of good character that is material to the Board’s decision.”
That includes Trump’s “long history of telling lies” about his net worth, divestiture from businesses, and payment to Stormy Daniels. “Donald Trump consistently takes advantage of those who are less powerful, a trait of those who lack good character,” the complaint continues, citing the Trump University class-action settlement, Trump’s companies not always paying contractors, racism that “is compelling evidence of his lack of good character,” and sexual assault allegations from 16 women against Trump. “Sexual assault where liquor is served is a unique danger,” the document notes.
The complaint also includes in the argument past legal action against Trump on housing discrimination as well as Federal Trade Commission and Treasury noncompliance cases.
The filing also pulls in the Russia investigation, arguing Trump’s associations with Felix Sater, with whom the Trump Organization worked on a potential Trump hotel in Moscow, “are obviously inconsistent with the good character required of the owner of an establishment licensed to serve and sell liquor in the District of Columbia.”
“Although Donald Trump has said over the years that he barely knows the known felon Felix Sater, contrary evidence is substantial. It has been definitively reported that Mr. Trump has partnered in a number of completed and proposed real estate development deals with Mr. Sater and the company Mr. Sater helped found, Bayrock Group, which has its offices inside Trump Tower,” the document states. “And it was well known that Mr. Sater is a Russian immigrant who was convicted in 1993 of stabbing a man in the face with the stem of a broken margarita glass and pled guilty in 1998 to involvement in a penny stock fraud scheme orchestrated by the Mafia.”