The former WWE Chairman Vince McMahon had landed in huge trouble. He recently got involved in a fresh controversy. The latest Wall Street Journal story on Vince alleged that he paid at least 4 women over 16 years to cover up sexual misconduct. After the report about additional non-disclosure agreements that were signed to keep women quiet, many are wondering if more people will come out with accusations. Vince reportedly reacted to the allegations. Recently, WWE stated in a public filing on Tuesday it found an additional $5.0 million in unrecorded company expenses related to two payments former CEO and chairman Vince McMahon made in 2007 and 2009.
Now, Brandon Thurston has reported that it seems more likely it’s connected to the former President of The United States of America Donald Trump.
Donald Trump might be linked with Vince McMahon
According to IRS filings, WWE spent a total of exactly $5 million in contributions to the Donald J. Trump Foundation in the same two years, 2007 and 2009. The records indicate the contributions came from WWE, and use its headquarters address, with no specific person named; the latest years-old comments from WWE’s media relations attributed the donations to Vince McMahon and his wife Linda McMahon, personally.
Tuesday was WWE’s stated target date for publishing reissued financial statements and its second-quarter earnings, but instead, the company wrote the report was being delayed.
The previously concealed pay-offs, which, until Tuesday, the company stated totaled $14.6 million, should’ve been recorded in WWE’s financial reporting because they benefited the company. The unrecorded expenses WWE states it needs to catch up on have grown to $19.6 million.
“[T]he Company has determined that two additional payments totaling $5.0 million, unrelated to the allegations that led to the Special Committee investigation, that Mr. McMahon made in 2007 and 2009 should have been recorded in the Company’s consolidated financial statements,” the company wrote in the Tuesday filing.
It is no secret that WWE was by far the biggest contributor to the Trump Foundation in 2007 and 2009, giving the organization $4 million and $1 million in those years, respectively, and in round numbers. This adds up to match the $5.0 million mentioned in the new WWE filing. Those were also years when the future U.S. president made rare appearances on WWE television programs.
Trump and McMahon supported opposing wrestlers on pay-per-view at WrestleMania in 2007 in what was billed “The Battle of the Billionaires” and resulted in McMahon having his head shaved as a stipulation of his side losing. In 2009, Trump, in an on-air storyline, “bought” WWE’s weekly Monday Night Raw program and “sold” it soon after.
The IRS filings listing WWE as the contributors to the Foundation in those years was noted and a WWE spokesperson in October 2012 said the money came directly from Vince McMahon, as opposed to the company, or both Vince and Linda. The WWE comment was made weeks before the election in which Linda was running for U.S. Senate for the second time.
Later, in 2016, a WWE spokesperson denied the Foundation contributions served as Trump’s appearance fees and that “WWE paid Donald Trump appearance fees separately.” But this time WWE said both McMahons personally made the contributions to the Foundation. “Vince and Linda McMahon made personal donations to Donald Trump’s foundation,” the spokesperson told the Huffington Post at the time.
WWE gave a comment consistent with that in 2017 after former chief operating officer Donna Goldsmith theorized the donations were in exchange for Trump’s appearances.
Trump had previously accepted donations to the Foundation in exchange for other work he did in entertainment, including from NBCUniversal and Comedy Central.
“My guess is that [the contributions to the Trump Foundation] did come directly from Vince,” Goldsmith told Forbes in 2017. “It was probably a payment for the  ‘Hair Versus Hair’ match.”
Trump’s appearances at and leading up to WWE’s biggest pay-per-view event of the year in 2007 possibly being related to a $4 million contribution, and his 2009 appearances on Raw possibly being connected to a lesser $1 million contribution, could reflect the difference in the agreed-upon value of those two sets of appearances.