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O’Leary of ‘Shark Tank’ Says He’ll Avoid Investing In ‘Mega Loser’ New York After Trump Ruling

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


A New York judge’s massive fine levied against former President Donald Trump and his sons following a finding that he committed fraud in overvaluing his properties for years to get favorable loans is creating a great deal of negative fallout that extends well beyond his ruling.

For instance, “Shark Tank” star and investor Kevin O’Leary said following Judge Arthur Engoron’s $355 million fine imposed on Trump earlier this month has convinced him to never again put money into “mega loser New York.”

“I’m not different than any other investor. I’m shocked at this. I can’t even understand or fathom the decision at all. There’s no rationale for it,” O’Leary said during an interview on Fox Business Network’s “Cavuto Coast To Coast.”

“It does not matter what the governor says,” he said in reference to comments that Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) made following the ruling — that people should not be concerned that New York is not business-friendly.

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“New York was already a loser state, like California is a loser state,’ O’Leary continued. “There are many loser states because of policy, high taxes, and uncompetitive regulation. It was already on the top of the list to be the loser state. I would never invest in New York now. I’m not the only person saying that.

“That is why New Yorkers should be concerned. The fine people of New York should ask themselves, why are we a loser state? How are we going to attract business? It is not just the existing businesses moving to Texas and Florida. What about new money that I’m talking about like a four billion-dollar data center? Not a chance I would put that in New York,” O’Leary added.

He concluded: “They have a lot of work to do to find themselves getting out of the situation, and this has occurred post-pandemic. It’s winner versus loser states. Look at Tennessee — the fastest-growing city is Nashville, with good policies and competitive taxes. You gotta start thinking about this in the context of winners and losers. New York is a mega loser state.”

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FOX News contributor and Georgetown University law professor Jonathan Turley also responded harshly to Engoron’s imposition of the massive fine in a ruling that also barred Trump from operating a business in the state for three years while banning his sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump for two years.

“Well, this court really proved Oscar Wilde’s rule that ‘The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it,” he said during a segment on the network last week. “Because the court has done everything short of ordering that Trump be thrown into a wood chipper. He’s imposed almost the maximum amount that James requested. He’s barring him from doing business in the city where he’s an iconic business figure, barring him from getting loans.

“The last part is particularly ironic because the banks not only said that they were not victims and did not complain about the alleged fraud, but they said that they wanted to do more business with Trump,” he added. “They described him as a ‘whale’ client. So this is all being done essentially in their name as victims, even though no one lost any money.

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“None of us could find a case like this. Yet, the first one, you have this fortune that is being demanded by the court to be turned over. I think there are real problems here. I think that this is going to have the same impact on some appellate judges. There have to be some limits, including constitutional limits on the size of penalties. This is confiscatory and, in my view, just excessive,” Turley said.

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