Once Aryan Skynet Goes Live It Doesn't Matter Who Pulled The Switch
“Two billionaire New York City developers bidding to build a new headquarters for the FBI – maybe the largest government development since the CIA moved to Langley in Northern Virginia in 1961 – have deep ties with President-elect Donald Trump, whose victory injects new intrigue into the jockeying for the more than $2 billion project,” reports Jonathan O’Connell of The Washington Post.
One, Steven Roth, served as an economic adviser to Trump’s presidential campaign and co-owns a building with him in Manhattan. Another, Larry Silverstein, has been referred to by Trump as a “friend of mine.”
Roth and Silverstein have both known Trump for more than 30 years. They have been rivals on some projects and cheerleaders on others.
Trump considered bidding on the FBI project himself before running for the presidency; the current FBI headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue is near his new Washington hotel.
And then there’s this wrinkle: The man who has lobbied hardest for a new campus, FBI Director James B. Comey, had his own role in the presidential campaign in publicly extending the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state less than two weeks before Election Day.
FBI officials are nearing the finish line on a decade-long push for a secure campus in the Washington suburbs. The contract attracted some of the most prominent developers on the East Coast. And the winning development team not only would receive more than $1 billion in federal appropriations to foot the cost of a new campus but also would win control of the current FBI headquarters property, considered a once-in-a-generation development opportunity in downtown Washington. […]
Roth [in addition to having served as a trustee of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and funded the Roth Center for Jewish Life at Dartmouth] is founder and chairman of Vornado Realty Trust, which acquired a mutual stake with Trump in a 2 million-square-foot Manhattan building in 2007 and has partnered in multiple commercial properties with Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner. […]
Silverstein, who founded his development company in 1957, has developed, owned or managed 40 million square feet of commercial real estate.
Trump proposed building two office towers with Silverstein at the former World Trade Center site four years after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
At the time, Trump called Silverstein “a great guy, a good guy … a friend of mine” in an interview on MSNBC, though they have also feuded on occasion.
For years, FBI leaders have argued that their current headquarters, the dated J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue NW, falls short of the security and operational needs of a modern crime-fighting agency. […]
Before running for office, Trump considered pursuing the project. After he won the deal to develop Washington’s Old Post Office Pavilion into a luxury hotel in 2013, he told The Washington Post that he and his daughter Ivanka would be “watching the FBI as to what’s going to happen” with the deal.
“When I talked with him, he wanted to talk about the FBI building. That was what was on his mind,” said Dorothy Robyn, a former real estate official at the Pentagon and the GSA, recalling a conversation at the time. “He talked about how he might submit a proposal to be the developer. I didn’t know if it was bluster or not, but he was definitely thinking about it.” […]
Because the Hoover building is across the street from Trump’s new D.C. hotel, he could benefit financially from its redevelopment. Trump owns about three-quarters of the hotel project personally, but he has said that he will step away from his business interests when he takes office.
“Anything that moves redevelopment quickly could only help the area around it,” said Neil O. Albert, president of the Downtown D.C. Business Improvement District, an association of downtown developers. […]
Trump’s history with Silverstein, chairman of Silverstein Properties and one of New York’s most prolific developers, appears to have had its ups and downs. Four years after the 9/11 attacks, Trump proposed building two office towers at the site, where Silverstein owned development rights. He called the Silverstein-backed design for the site “the worst pile of crap architecture I have ever seen in my life.”
Silverstein supported Clinton for president, but the day after the election, speaking at a New York real estate conference, he complimented Trump’s leadership qualities. For the FBI project, Silverstein is bidding in partnership with Lerner Enterprises, headed by Washington Nationals owner Theodore N. Lerner.
Trump “works hard. He is highly focused when he wants to be,” Silverstein said at the conference, according to Commercial Property Executive, a trade publication. “Knowing his determination, his drive, his commitment once he makes it … will propel him to be the best president he can possibly be.”
The involvement of either Roth or Silverstein in the construction of the new FBI headquarters, should either of these revered worthies receive the contract, would surely prove a public blessing in view of America’s need to accommodate “the security and operational needs of a modern crime-fighting agency” in a world plagued, as our world certainly is, by the unending threat of international terrorism.
Hail Trump! Hail Our People! Hail Victory!