Trump biographer explains how his corruption is another reminder the president is not a billionaire
Journalist David Cay Johnston is the founder of 'DC Report' (screengrab)

Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer David Cay Johnston explained on MSNBC Monday that President Donald Trump's corruption goes back to his lie about being a billionaire.


The conversation surrounded Natasha Bertrand's bombshell report that Air Force planes have been stopping to refuel at the airport near Trump's Scotland resort. The airport in the area is key to Trump's success with the resort, which has been losing profits since he took office. Trump is also losing money at his Ireland resort where Mike Pence stayed recently and spent taxpayer dollars to fly back and forth between the town and Dublin. MSNBC host Chris Matthews noted that from the day Trump's presidency began he was giving special treatment to anyone staying at his properties, including the one near the White House.

"Donald doesn’t have any blinders about ethics," Johnston explained. "They don’t exist to him. And this is also money-grubbing. If Donald were actually a billionaire, he’d invite the G7 leaders to come and stay for free for the three or four days it takes to hold the G7 meeting at Doral. He needs the money, because it’s all smoke and mirrors. It’s a con job. And I’m sure we have not seen the full picture yet of what’s happening. The story that Natasha broke with a colleague is extraordinary in showing the absolute money-grubbing nature of Donald Trump and his family and there's, I’m sure, a lot more yet to be uncovered."

Matthews said that it's clear "the word is out" about forking over as much money as possible to Trump.

"The VP is doing it, the Air Force is doing it, foreign leaders are doing it, member of Congress, people running for offices are doing it, spend some money on Trump, he’ll like you," said the host.

Jason Johnson, editor of "The Root," called it a "pyramid scam" that it seems not only Trump but the whole family is running.

Johnston said that it started from the very beginning when the Trump family took a "two-minute turn on the pavement" after the inauguration outside the hotel.

"That was the signal. You will pay tribute. Here’s my hotel," he said. "I don’t think anybody could miss that. By the way, the Pentagon did get something. They got $74 billion in increased funding, enough money to provide free college tuition for every student in America so the Pentagon has got a lot more money."

Watch the full discussion below: