Donald Trump is facing an onslaught of criticism from Nevada Democrats Over Comments About Housing Crisis

May 24, 2016
In The News

Donald Trump is facing an onslaught of criticism from Nevada Democrats, particularly U.S. Rep. Dina Titus, over comments he made in 2007 about an anticipated downturn in the real estate market.

Trump’s comments were made in March 2007 to The Globe and Mail. The Canadian publication quoted the billionaire businessman predicting “very minor” problems compared with the depression that hit in the early 1990s. In that report, Trump indicated he was ready to invest in depressed property, saying: “People have been talking about the end of the cycle for 12 years, and I’m excited if it is. I’ve always made more money in bad markets than in good markets.”

Fast-forward nine years later, when Trump is running for president. Nevada, a swing state, was battered in the housing crisis, suffering the highest foreclosure rate nationwide. NBC News and other outlets earlier this week reported Trump’s 2007 comments, which have attracted the attention of Democrats nationally.

Titus, D-Nev., spoke from the House floor on Tuesday to “demand an apology” from Trump. She said Trump “actually bragged about being able to make a lot of money from a housing market that was about to burst.”

Trump’s campaign spokeswoman didn’t respond to a request for comment.

“He rooted for that bubble to burst,” Titus said. “Well, the crash of the housing market devastated my hometown of Las Vegas, which was one of the hardest hit in the country. Thousands lost their homes and 71 percent of homes were underwater — some by over 50 percent.”

Pointing to increased accountability and reformed lending policies, Titus said Nevada is slowly coming back.

“But we remember how awful it was,” Titus said. “So we say to Mr. Trump: Keep your short fingers out of the Nevada housing market.”

Trump’s business empire reaches into Nevada.

The $1.2 billion Trump International opened near the Strip in March 2008. The 64-story nongaming hotel, which also sells condominiums, had its own challenges in the Great Recession and put on hold plans to build a second tower.

Nevada State Democratic Party spokesman Stewart Boss said Trump’s 2007 comments demonstrate a “callous attitude.”

“Until Trump releases his tax returns, we have no way of knowing how much he profited while Nevadans struggled through the worst economic crisis of their lifetimes,” Boss said.