Congressman Vern Buchanan Finds Himself In A Yacht of Trouble

Wednesday, August 22, 2018


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Yesterday, while reports revealed that former senior Trump officials committed various campaign finance, bank, and tax fraud violations, reports also surfaced that Congressman Vern Buchanan (FL-16) received a loan from a foreign bankthat lobbied in favor of the Republican tax law.

The report also highlighted that Congressman Buchanan used the loan to purchase a multi-million dollar yacht the same day the Republican tax bill passed the House of Representatives. Both BMO Harris and Congressman Buchanan stand to reap substantial long-term benefits from the tax law.

See coverage below: 

MapLight: Top Republican on Tax Subcommittee Received Yacht Loan From Foreign Bank Lobbying on 2017 Tax Bill

  • MapLight: “As Republicans were finalizing tax cut legislation in late 2017, a foreign-owned bank seeking to shape the bill gave a seven-figure yacht loan to a top GOP lawmaker on the committee writing the measure, according to documents reviewed by Capital & Main and MapLight. Representative Vern Buchanan (R-FL), who sits on the House Ways and Means Committee and leads its tax policy subcommittee, has been under fire in recent weeks for purchasing a yacht on the same day he voted for the GOP tax package. Buchanan registered a 73-foot Ocean Alexander vessel named Entrepreneur with the U.S. Coast Guard a month later, according to federal records.”

Florida Center For Investigative Reporting: U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan Received Yacht Loan From Canadian Bank Trying To Influence Tax Bill

  • Florida Center For Investigative Reporting: “Although Buchanan is one of the wealthiest members of Congress — worth at least $80 million — federal records show one of his limited liability companies financed the purchase with a BMO Harris Bank loan worth as much as $5 million. Since 2016, Buchanan’s companies have received three loans worth as much as $35 million from BMO Harris, which is the American subsidiary of the Bank of Montreal. In total, since he was appointed to the Ways and Means Committee in 2010, Buchanan and his companies have received between $17 million and $85 million worth of loans from four lenders.”

Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Vern Buchanan facing more questions about yacht purchase

  • Sarasota Herald-Tribune: “U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan is facing more questions about his purchase of a yacht on the same day Congress voted for a tax cut, with a new report detailing how Buchanan’s yacht loan came from a ‘foreign-owned bank seeking to shape’ the tax bill. The Florida Center for Investigative Reporting published an article Tuesday in partnership with MapLight and Capital & Main highlighting that Buchanan financed his yacht purchase with a loan of up to $5 million from BMO Harris Bank.”

Florida Politics: Foreign bank floated funds for Vern Buchanan’s yacht as it lobbied for tax reform

  • Florida Politics: “Buchanan already had the cash in the bank for the yacht, of course — according to a Roll Call report, Buchanan’s $73.9 million net worth makes him the eighth wealthiest member of Congress, so he likely had enough to splurge on a yacht, especially considering progressive group Tax March pegged his savings from the GOP tax plan at up to $2.1 million.”

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