Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a rally at the Pensacola Bay Center on September 9, 2016 in Pensacola, Florida. (AFP)
The Donald J. Trump Foundation, established by the US Republican presidential nominee, has reportedly been collecting donations from charities and using them to benefit other charities in his name.
In fact, Trump has not personally contributed to his own supposedly non-profit foundation since 2008, when he “donated” $30,000 to the organization – $5,000 less than what he paid it the previous year,The Washington Post reported Saturday citing its own investigation into the finances of the foundation.
Trump’s foundation is “a charity that allowed a rich man to be philanthropic for free,” concluded the influential liberal newspaper affiliated with the Democratic Party.
In 2007,  Trump used the foundation’s money to pay for a 6-foot painting of himself that his wife purchased at an auction, in violation of regulations by US tax authority, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which prohibits a charity’s officers from using the group’s funds to purchase things for their own benefit.
Last week, the Post also reported that Trump paid a $2,500 fine for using the foundation to make a political contribution to a PAC supporting Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi in 2013, whose office at the time was considering an investigation into Trump University.
The foundation also misrepresented donations it made in the past and four charities that the foundation claimed it had donated to said they had never received any money.
The Trump campaign has declined to comment on the report.
The development came as Trump took in an estimated $3 million at a single fundraising event on a farm outside Cleveland, Ohio, earlier in the week
"The fact that people came in from out of town to go to that, I think said something," The Hill reported, citing a source close to Trump’s presidential campaign.
According to the report, the controversial Republican presidential nominee has been slower to charm the donor class than any Republican nominee in recent memory largely because the billionaire spent the entire primary campaign telling rich conservatives he did not want their cash.
However, sources at the highest levels of Trump's fundraising operation have described a turning point recently with Trump drawing closer to his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in the polls. 
The fundraiser was held on the farm of renowned GOP donor Eddie Crawford and attended by wealthy Republicans from the battleground state, the source said. 

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