Warren Buffett launched a blistering attack on Donald Trump for his self-aggrandizing claims about fortune and sacrifice.
Speaking at an Omaha rally in support of Hillary Clinton, the investor and philanthropist Buffett fired away at the Republican nominee in a volley of criticism.
Before an audience of several thousand, Buffett challenged Trump to agree to a meeting where they would both release their tax returns, according to The New York Times.
“I’ve got news for him. I’m under audit, too.”
“There are no rules against showing our tax returns and we’ll just let people ask questions about the items that are on there. He’s not afraid of the IRS, he’s afraid because of you.”
In what Yahoo Finance called a “three-point takedown,” Buffett let loose on Trump’s company, Trump Hotel and Casino Resorts, formed in 1995.
“That was the only time Donald Trump went to the American people and said, ‘I’m a winner, invest in my company. …'”
“Over the next 10 years, the company loses money every year, every single year. He takes $44 million in compensation.”
“If a monkey had thrown a dart at the stock page it would have made 150%.”
“People who believe in [Trump] came away losing well over 90 cents on the dollar. They got back less than a dime.”
— CBS News (@CBSNews) August 1, 2016
The attack from Buffett, called the “Sage of Omaha” and the nation’s most respected investor, split wide open the notion that Trump’s success as a businessman qualified him to run the country, despite his lack of political experience.
Buffett then announced a new campaign called “Drive 2 Vote,” an effort intended to bring out voters in Nebraska’s second congressional district, which offers a single Electoral College vote to the district winner.
Buffett said he had reserved a 32-seat trolley for the day, with a goal of getting the highest percentage turnout of any congressional district in the country.
“I will take at least 10 people to the polls who would otherwise have difficulty getting there. Let’s give America a civics lesson.”
Buffett slammed Trump for claiming that he had made “sacrifices” by building buildings and working hard. The Republican nominee had made this retort to Khizr Khan, the Muslim father of an Army captain killed in Iraq, who said during a speech at the Democratic convention, that Mr. Trump had “sacrificed nothing” for the country.
Buffett said no member of his own family has gone to Iraq or Afghanistan.
“No member of the Trump family has gone to Iraq or Afghanistan. We’ve both done extremely well. Our families haven’t sacrificed anything, Donald Trump hasn’t sacrificed anything.”
“How in the world can you stand up to a couple of parents who lost a son and talk about sacrificing because you were building a bunch of buildings?”
— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) August 2, 2016
More than 1,000 people gathered to hear Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Buffett. The Times spoke to audience member Jim Magill, a retired chief master sergeant in the Air Force. Though he is a Republican, he said he supported Mrs. Clinton and did not believe Mr. Trump’s promises to veterans.
Magill said he was “appalled” about the Republican nominee’s criticism of the Khans.
“It was deplorable somebody would say anything like that about a veteran who died for his country to his parents. He should have been slapped.”
Trump’s campaign has not responded to requests for comment. But the nation will be watching Trump’s Twitter account.
[Photo by Andrew Harnik/AP Images]