January 21, 2021
New Orleans It’s January, not March, but watching the Trump exit from Washington still summons the old “in like a lion, out like a lamb.” He said he would be back again in some form, which might have seemed ominous to many, but only says to me that he’ll be booking a comp room at his hotel a spit away from the White House, and who will care. I was on a call with associates preparing for the coming waves of voter suppression, and one of our team was breathing easier by the minute he said, still worried that there might be one last gasp from former president Donald Trump. If there was one, it was only a wave and a whisper.
As Joe Biden was preaching unity, Trump was likely burning up the phone talking fire sale and yelling, “call Saul.” He has to raise a big nut this year, estimated between $300 and $400 million on debit and refinancing for his properties. The Trump Organization, heavy into hotel and golf properties that were slammed by the pandemic, was down an estimated 39% in revenues in 2020. Those numbers don’t sweeten the coffee for prospective bankers, and when it comes to bankers, most of the ones holding his paper, Deutsche Bank and Signature, have either said no way or no mas. My bet is that to make his properties in America great, he has to get on his knees to foreign banks where his four years left big markers, like Israel, Turkey, and, yes, Russia. The optics might not look great, but when he’s counting his friends on one hand, three of the fingers would have their area codes.
As for lawyers, he has a bit of a problem lining up representation for his coming impeachment trial. Rudy is ready, but reportedly Trump didn’t like the notion of him saying he was on point before working it out with the Donald. Son-in-law supposedly was spending his last day in the White House trying to put together a team. The last bunch has headed for the hills it seems now that Trump’s star has faded and their law partners are skittish about the new wave in the White House and the blowback from the C-suite in the private sector. But, hey, we’re talking about lawyers now, so never fear, there are enough ambulance chasers and wannabe egomaniacs with law licenses between DC and NYC to join hand to hand in a giant conga line. Lawyers have a rap for repping mass murderers and the mob, so this one will be easy-peasy.
Trump has a bit of a brand problem for sure. Much of his so-called base are more my buddies at Motel 6, than gold AE card folks asking for a suite for a grand or two. He might have to move them somewhere under something else, but I’m betting he looks to make the transition from high rollers to low ballers where he can make a sell for his snake oil. Normally, we would simply say, luckily, he has his health and his family, but I’m not so sure about his health, and his family may not be ready to stand in front of Florida trailer parks with a For Rent sign, so that may not be such happy trails either.