That’s the wrong question to ask. The right question is this: Just how much jeopardy — legally and financially — is Trump in over the next few years? And the answer is “a lot.”
Whether Trump prevails in this specific case or not, he still faces an absolute legion of legal problems. Among them:
All of those various legal entanglements — even if they all wind up going in Trump’s favor — will cost a whole lot of money. And, oddly for a billionaire, Trump is not in great financial shape at the moment — and there are more problems on that front looming on the horizon.
Overall, Trump’s businesses produced almost 40% less revenue in 2020 versus 2019. He made $30 million less at his Doral property in Miami than he did in 2019. Revenue at the Trump International Hotel in Washington and the former President’s Turnberry property in Scotland were down more than 60% year over year.
Those revenue setbacks came even before Trump’s actions (and lack thereof) during the January 6 riots — a moment that led to his second impeachment by the House of Representatives and brought condemnation down on him from across the political and business worlds.
“[Trump] appears to be responsible for loans totaling $421 million, most of which is coming due within four years.
“Should he win re-election, his lenders could be placed in the unprecedented position of weighing whether to foreclose on a sitting president. Whether he wins or loses, he will probably need to find new ways to use his brand — and his popularity among tens of millions of Americans — to make money.”
Trump didn’t win reelection. Which means that any protections — or concessions — that financial institutions might be willing to extend to a sitting President no longer exist. And out of the White House and with a brand badly damaged by his actions in the White House (culminating in his role in the January 6 riot) Trump’s earning power, particularly from new revenue streams, appears limited.
“When the project encountered problems, he tried to walk away from his huge debts. For most individuals or businesses, that would have been a recipe for ruin. But tax-return data, other records and interviews show that rather than warring with a notoriously litigious and headline-seeking client, lenders cut Mr. Trump slack — exactly what he seemed to have been counting on.”
The question for Trump going forward is how much leverage he retains over the people he owes money to. And how much he will be to muddy the waters with a slew of legal filings. Yes, those tactics worked in the past. But Trump’s situation — legally and financially — have gone downhill since he left the White House.
The real question then about Trump’s future is whether he can make it unscathed to 2024. And that is a very open question right now.