“I can always do business with an asshole, but not a liar”: People at Toronto’s Trump Tower talk about the American election

“I can always do business with an asshole, but not a liar”: People at Toronto’s Trump Tower talk about the American election

By this time tomorrow, America will either be Great Again, or it will have elected Hillary Clinton, in which case everything will probably be fine. Canada, obviously, has no direct say in the outcome of the U.S. election. What we do have is the Trump International Hotel and Tower, at Bay and Adelaide. Donald Trump had little to do with developing the tower (or, for that matter, with running it into receivership), but he is involved with the building’s management company—and, of course, he licensed his name for use on the marquee. Despite a welter of recent bad press, both for Trump and the tower, the hotel still has at least a few bookings. We went there and spoke to some of the hotel guests we found near the entrance.

Seth Alward

40, natural gas trader from Calgary

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I’m here for work. But I kind of like the idea of staying here for the vote as well, just for entertainment purposes.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
Definitely. He’s wrecked his name. I don’t know if he knew that it was going to end up like this.

Trump or Hillary and why?
I’m for Hillary—but I’m not, like, a proud Hillary supporter.
 
 

Louis Adimando

31, financial worker from Staten Island, New York

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
It’s one of the preferred hotels of the institution I work for, so I said, why not? On the eve of the election, where else would you stay?

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
Not to me. I’m sure there are some Americans that feel that way, but not me.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Definitely more Trump. I don’t think she’s the person that you want in the White House, based on a lot of the charges that are around her currently. She spent her whole life in politics and has really done nothing in the private sector. I want to make sure that our business climate is effective and growing.
 
 

Steve Litsas (and Sophie)

48, physician from Toronto

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
For my wedding anniversary. First year.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
No.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Trump, because he’s a silly fellow. No, I’ll be serious. Trump, because despite the fact that he is probably not very politically savvy or intelligent, he has motivated the American people and he’s created an uprising.
 
 

Athena Tzogaf

46, banker from Toronto

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I’m visiting for a business conference.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
Yes and no. I try to disassociate the politician from the hotel, because he’s first a businessman and then a politician.

Trump or Hillary and why?
I’m glad I don’t have to make that decision, because I could tell you “no” for both. One appears to be of more sound mind, but is dishonest, and the other sounds crazy, but at least maybe tells it like it is. I just wouldn’t vote.
 
 

Brent Wheeler

40, real estate developer from Vancouver

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
It’s purely an economic thing. It’s the cheapest place—half the price of Le Germain, my go-to.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
I think it’s changed for everybody. It’s no longer worth anything. It’s actually a hindrance.

Trump or Hillary and why?
I don’t vote, so I don’t have an opinion. Well, I have a humble opinion. I think Hillary, for sure, because she’s been working up to this job for 30 years and she’s got the ex-president, her husband, in the background, probably talking in her ear.
 
 

John Perri

57, investment banker from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I sit on a Canadian public company’s board, so I’m here for a board meeting.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
No.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Trump. I can always do business with an asshole, but not a liar.
 
 

Max Adelson

26, finance worker from Toronto

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I’m here for an event—a speaker series on market structure.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
The brand name for hotels and golf courses? Not really. The man himself and what he means to the Republican party? Absolutely.

Trump or Hillary and why?
I’d have to say Hillary, because she’s not a psycho. I’d probably have more confidence that she wouldn’t do anything unconventional.
 
 

Richard Appleby

66, salesperson from Buffalo, New York

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I’m here with my wife for a concert tonight—the Pentatonix.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
Yes. Not in a good way.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Hillary. Only because she has more government experience.
 
 

Rosemary Appleby

64, retired special education teacher from Buffalo, New York

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
I’m here with Richard for the concert.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
It really has. I would have to agree that it hasn’t been in a good way. I think he comes across as more crude and inexperienced than I thought before.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Hillary for sure. I think we need a woman in the White House, and I think she has the experience to carry it off.
 
 

Kirolos Tadros

29, pharmacist from Vaughan

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
My wife booked a night at the Trump as a birthday surprise for me.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
Yeah, of course. I’ve always thought about Trump as a business guy, and with what’s happening now I’m thinking more about politics.

Trump or Hillary and why?
I would vote for Trump. I find that Hillary is very corrupt. I wasn’t really into politics, but lately with the election I’ve been following mostly what’s happening with Hillary.
 
 

Kristen Andraous

30, pharmacist from Vaughan

Why are you at the Trump Tower?
We’re celebrating Kirolos’s birthday.

Have the past few months changed what the Trump name means to you at all?
I never used to think about Trump. I just knew that he was this rich guy, that he used to have a show or something, but that was it. Now I think he’s kind of douchey. That’s it, really. I don’t really follow politics, to be honest. I just know that he’s a douche.

Trump or Hillary and why?
Honestly, neither. I think they both suck. I really feel bad for the Americans. If there were a gun to my head, I’d probably choose Trump. I would love for a woman to be president, but I want the right woman and I don’t know if she’s it. I think she’s not a nice person. I just wouldn’t vote.