Donald Trump thinks there's a real shady Slim, and the Republican presidential nominee is ready to stand up against the supposed conspiracy.
Trump, who has regularly railed against supposed media bias, is set as early as Friday to claim that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim is part of a media conspiracy to help his opponent, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. The GOP nominee "will broaden his attack against the media to hit globalism and the Clinton Foundation by charging that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim is part of a biased coalition working in collusion with the Clinton campaign and its supporters to generate news reports of decades-old allegations from several women," the Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday.
Slim is an investor and business mogul with an estimated net worth of nearly $50 billion. He and his family are the single largest shareholder in New York Times Co., with 17 percent of its Class A shares, although the Sulzberger family remains in control of the company with 90 percent of its Class B shares. Slim and his foundation have also donated between $250,000 and $500,000 to the Clinton Foundation since it was founded nearly two decades ago.
Trump said in a speech Thursday afternoon he would soon produce evidence the allegations against him were false. The New York Times published a story Wednesday detailing the accounts of two women who said Trump touched them inappropriately. A People Magazine reporter also published Wednesday an account of being sexually assaulted by Trump while working on a story about the real estate mogul in 2005.
Trump forcefully denied the allegations — even seemingly implying Thursday the People reporter wasn't attractive enough to warrant assault — and now reportedly plans to tie Slim to a conspiracy against him. Trump's theory would seemingly be that Slim has his business interests in mind and is pushing these allegations to help the Times. A Trump adviser told the Journal that this line of attack also allows Trump to slam the "failing" New York Times that had to be "rescued" by a "foreigner."
The GOP nominee has called for a massive wall along the U.S.'s border with Mexico. In the speech announcing his campaign, Trump called Mexicans coming to America "criminals" and "rapists."
Slim, through a spokesman, denied Trump's allegations. "This is totally false," said Arturo Elias, Slim’s spokesman, told the Wall Street Journal. "Of course we aren’t interfering in the U.S. election. We aren’t even active in Mexican politics."
The Clinton campaign spokesman, meanwhile, told the paper this was a "deranged right-wing conspiracy theory."
For a period Slim was considered the richest man in the world and Forbes now ranks him No. 4, trailing only Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Zara founder Amancio Ortega and investor Warren Buffett. Slim, 76, is a towering figure in Mexico. His biographer detailed to the Guardian last year how difficult it was to track down the story of the larger than life billionaire who has built a business empire involved with everything from sports, to healthcare, to telecommunications.
“Many people refused to speak with me because they were scared of upsetting the biographee,” author Diego Enrique Osorno told the British paper.