The Donald Trump campaign is denying reports that the campaign requested a $6-million contribution from an organization it calls “the Clinton Foundation.”
Trump spokesman Jason Miller said Monday that the candidate’s campaign did not seek the donation and did not ask for it.
“It’s not true,” Miller said in a statement to ABC News.
“The campaign has never requested a donation from the Clinton Foundation, which is a private organization.”
The Trump campaign’s response comes after The New York Times reported last week that the Trump campaign requested the $6.5 million contribution in 2016.
The Times reported that Trump aides had asked for the $2.6 million contribution, citing a letter that former campaign chairman Paul Manafort sent to then-campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, the Times reported.
Manafort had told Lewandowski in a January 2016 email that “you need to get the Clinton campaign on board, ASAP,” according to the Times.
Manafort and Lewandowski also asked Lewandowski to “push for a $3 million donation to the Clinton Global Initiative.”
“The Trump campaign did seek the $3M donation in 2016,” Miller told ABC News in a phone interview.
“This is the first time the Trump Campaign has ever sought any donation from any organization related to the Hillary Clinton campaign.”
Miller said that the $5.9 million contribution the Trump team made in 2016 did not involve “fraudulently concealing a donation.”
The campaign has since responded to the report by claiming that it “never sought a donation” from the foundation.
“As a private foundation, the Clinton Family Foundation does not solicit money for itself.
Instead, we ask people to make a donation, which goes directly to the foundation, and it never happens,” Miller added.
“While it is unfortunate that a handful of people in the Clinton family have taken advantage of the Clinton Presidential Foundation to enrich themselves, the Clintons have always and will continue to operate the charity in a way that makes sense for the foundation and the people who rely on it.”
The Times also reported that Manafort told Lewa he was “not happy” with Manafort’s response to the fundraising request.
“I said, ‘You know what?
Don’t make it sound like this is something you’re not happy about,'” Lewandowski recalled.
“So I said, you know what, I’m going to tell my people to get in touch with Corey Lewa.
And I called him the next day, and I said he needs to have an attorney on the line and I needed an attorney to be on the phone with Corey, and he had to tell me that he was not happy with what he said and he wanted to be clear that he didn’t know what he was doing.”
Trump has repeatedly attacked the Clintons over their charitable work.
In March, Trump told Fox News that the Clintons were “corrupt and disgusting,” and “have done a lot of bad things.”
On Monday, Trump said he would not have accepted the $1.5-million donation from Lewandowski and would not seek a $2-million check from the campaign.
“That’s all I’m asking,” Trump said.
“If I don’t have it, I don´t get it.”
Trump said in March that he did not think the Clintons “deserve” the $10 million donation they were promised from the charity.
“They have no intention of paying it, and they don’t want to pay it,” Trump told ABC.
“We need to make them pay it, because they’re not going to pay, but they’re getting rich off of it.
Trump and Lewa have both said that they have no conflicts of interest with the Clinton foundation.
The Clinton Foundation does, however, have a conflict of interest when it comes to the contributions the foundation receives from foreign governments, according to reports from the New York Post and CNN.
The Post reported in March 2017 that the Clinton administration has been soliciting contributions from foreign leaders in recent years.
“Foreign governments have raised tens of millions of dollars for the Clinton-Kaine campaigns, with the Clintons receiving a total of more than $4 million from governments ranging from Brazil, China, Iran, Russia, Turkey, and Turkey,” the Post reported.
“Clinton received $10.4 million in donations from countries including Saudi Arabia, China and Russia.”
CNN reported that the total amount of donations received by the Clinton camp was nearly $2 million from countries such as Saudi Arabia and China.
“In some cases, foreign governments have also given money to the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton Campaign for President, as well as to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the Republican National Committee, and the Republican Governors Association,” the report said.
The donations, which were all made through a foreign government, “are meant to be gifts and not tax deductible,” according the Post.