Although Mr. Trump invoked his constitutional right against self-incrimination when initially questioned by the office last year, he answered questions from the attorney general, Letitia James, and her lawyers in the April deposition, a transcript of which was unsealed on Wednesday.
The transcript shows a combative Mr. Trump, who was named as a defendant in the case alongside his company and three of his children, at times barely allowing lawyers to get a word in. The former president frequently seems personally offended by the idea that his net worth is being questioned.
Mr. Trump is seeking to have the case thrown out. A judge could rule on that effort next month, but for now, the case appears headed to trial in early October.
Below are some of the highlights from the transcript of his deposition:
Mr. Trump refers to his time in the Oval Office with a notable understatement.
The former president was asked by Kevin Wallace, a senior lawyer in Ms. James’s office, about his relationship to his company. He said that he was not the final decision maker, though he later suggested he might be involved in “something major, final decisions, whatever.”
KEVIN WALLACE: Mr. Trump, are you currently the person with ultimate decision-making authority for the Trump Organization?
DONALD J. TRUMP: No.
MR. WALLACE: Who would that be?
MR. TRUMP: My son Eric is much more involved with it than I am. I’ve been doing other things.
Mr. Trump claims to have protected the world from nuclear war while in office.
In an exchange soon after that, Mr. Trump acknowledged that those other things included having been president.
MR. TRUMP: I was very busy. I was — I considered this the most important job in the world, saving millions of lives. I think you would have nuclear holocaust, if I didn’t deal with North Korea. I think you would have a nuclear war, if I weren’t elected. And I think you might have a nuclear war now, if you want to know the truth.
Mr. Trump declines to say who has expressed interest in buying Mar-a-Lago.
During the deposition, Mr. Trump claimed to own “the greatest pieces of property in the world” and said that if he were ever to put them up for sale, the prices offered would be staggering. At one point, Mr. Wallace decided to test one of those assertions.
MR. TRUMP: I’ve had people say, if you ever sell Mar-a-Lago, please call me. That’s not for sale.
MR. WALLACE: Who, for example, has told you that?
MR. TRUMP: Well, I rather not say because I don’t want to embarrass them, and I may be putting some of these people on the stand.
Later in the session, Mr. Trump said while he didn’t know who the specific people were who had made such offers, “I know they’re very rich people.”
Mr. Trump derides his annual financial statements, saying that he never felt they would be taken seriously.
The attorney general’s case against Mr. Trump focuses on his annual financial statements, which she says overvalue his property by up to $2.2 billion each year.
Read More: Excerpts From Trump’s Deposition With the New York Attorney General