Monday, June 19, 2017

NY Times -- Russia Renewed Unused Trump Trademarks in 2016

Despite President Trump’s denials, there are many examples of his close relationship with the Russian government. This is just one more you can add to the list.

“Amid a broadening investigation of Russian contacts with his associates and his own role in trying to stop it, President Trump fired off another angry tweet this past week repeating his assertion that he has no business interests in Russia.

“But while no Trump Tower graces the Moscow skyline, the Russian authorities recently made sure that another piece of valuable property — the intellectual kind — bearing the same name remained safely in Mr. Trump’s portfolio.

“Last year, while hacking Democrats’ emails and working to undermine the American presidential election, the Russian government also granted extensions to six trademarks for Mr. Trump that had been set to expire. The Trump trademarks, originally obtained between 1996 and 2007 for hotels and branding deals that never materialized, each had terms that were coming to an end in 2016.”

Robert Reich comments:

Remember when Trump said, “I have nothing to do with Russia – no deals, no loans, no thing!”

A new report shows that the Russian government renewed 6 Trump trademarks last year, on the basis of applications made by Trump's business. 4 of the trademark renewals were approved on Election Day -- a move that would have needed the Kremlin's blessing.

Registered trademarks are giant financial assets for a business like Trump’s, which in recent years has made big money by selling his name rather than by building or making anything.

Other countries also appear to be using trademarks to curry favor with Trump. According to the New York Times, his business currently has 157 trademark applications pending in 36 nations. Earlier this week China approved 9 Trump trademarks that had previously been rejected.

Trump's Russian trademarks are another clear violation of the Constitution's foreign bribery clause.

Russia Renewed Unused Trump Trademarks in 2016


Sergei Savostyanov/TASS, via Getty Images