As if adding insult to the injury caused by lockdown orders, billionaires and political elites were found to have pilfered off Paycheck Protection Program money that could have kept many small businesses from closing or falling into bankruptcy.
Leading the charge on this unethical scheme, Democrat Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi turned a blind eye when her husband’s company took money out of the pockets of working Americans. The Pelosi’s are worth a reported $120 million.
Speaker Pelosi’s spokesman, Drew Hammill, reportedly said that Paul Pelosi is only “a minor, passive investor in this company. He was not involved in or even aware of this PPP loan.”
Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst proposed legislation that would require lawmakers to promptly disclose information regarding themselves or family members applying or benefiting from PPP loans. It did not pass through Congress to President Trump’s desk.
“The PPP has saved countless businesses and the jobs of millions of Americans, but those in Congress who are voting on it or any issue where a potential conflict of interest may exist need to be upfront about it,” Sen. Ernst stated. “The only reason to oppose this bill is if you have something to hide.”
Paul Pelosi is a stakeholder in EDI Associates, that secured a PPP loan for upwards of $1 million. According to financial records, the Speaker’s husband holds a stake valued at upwards of $500,000 in the company. Making a case that the Speaker’s husband was unaware of the huge bailout when he has $500,000 at risk simply does not pass the smell test. Pelosi, like other Washington, D.C., insiders stinks of corruption.
Since the scandal broke that wealthy and well-connected individuals had swindled working families, President Donald Trump published a list of PPP borrowers. The Trump Administration’s effort at transparency has stunned as billionaires, celebrities, country clubs and other wealthy businesses were found to have swelled their bank accounts.
One such beneficiary was actor Robert DeNiro. A chain of high-end restaurants co-founded by the Godfather actor reportedly secured 14 taxpayer-funded loans for a staggering $27.7 million haul. According to reports, the Oscar-winning actor is reportedly worth upwards of $500 million.
Other celebrities got in on the cash too. Recently declared presidential candidate Kanye West, who owns Yeezy clothing brand applied for and got PPP loans totaling somewhere between $2 and $5 million. Kanye West was declared a billionaire earlier this year and his wife, Kim Kardashian is estimated to be worth $900 million.
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin explicitly stated that individuals and businesses that had alternative resources should not apply for PPP loans. Working families will be forced to repay the stimulus money with interest. Obviously, that was no concern of wealthy liberal elites such as Speaker Pelosi and Robert de Niro, among others. The often profane actor has been deafeningly quiet about the millions he took away from small businesses.
While these loans were designed to only help small or ailing businesses, one of the most grotesque misappropriations came from California billionaire Ronald Burkle.
With a reported net worth of more than $1.5 billion, Burkle controls an exclusive membership club called Soho House. Reports indicate the organization swiped as much as $23 million in PPP loans for facilities in exclusive areas of New York, Miami Beach, Chicago, and West Hollywood. Last month alone, the organization raised $100 million and had a valuation of approximately $2 billion. That far exceeds the expectations of mom and pop businesses on Main Street USA staying the course through uncertain times.
A law firm Joe Biden founded also took PPP loan money. The Delaware based law firm received between $150,000 and $350,000 from the government program. Although Biden does not have a current financial interest in the firm its interesting since Biden has been so outspoken against this program. Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh in an interview with Fox News rightly pointed out, “Instead of attacking President Trump as an involuntary reflex, maybe Joe Biden should just say ‘thank you’ once in a while.”
Along with billionaires and politicians, 400 golfing resorts, mega-mansion rental outfits, and a slew of multi-millionaires took money away from those who need suppor