Sen. Bob Corker: Trump Can Legally Run His Company From The Oval Office
For months, Republicans have tried (and failed) to convince voters that Donald Trump’s questionable business deals are ‘normal.’ Now, Tennessee senator Bob Corker (R) is suggesting that Trump can run his companies from the Oval Office.
During an interview with The Daily Beast, Corker said: “The president isn’t required to give up his or her financial dealings when they enter the Oval Office.”
Senior government officials in the Executive Branch are barred from participating in any matter that has a financial benefit for the official or the official’s immediate family. But the same rules that restrain doesn’t apply to the president.
“I just realized myself last night that it didn’t apply,” Corker added.
Both Trump and Clinton would bring potential conflicts of interest to the Oval Office if elected: a large international corporate empire and a global foundation, respectively. And there’s no law that requires them not to engage in self-dealing—something that even senior lawmakers are unaware of.
But Trump’s conflict of interests as a businessman with international investments are a magnitude more complicated than Clinton’s Foundation.
The Clinton Foundation, to which the Clintons have donated millions of dollars, has spent years doing work that benefits people all across the globe.
The organization has helped over 400 million people in nearly 200 countries, whether by providing easier access to life-saving HIV/AIDS drugs or helping children in America have healthier food options at school. The Clintons, by the way, don’t make a single penny in profits from the group.
Trump business dealings, however, are attached to locations all around the world, and his daily decisions as president could impact his company’s financial prosperity.
“Trump is a very different beast. His holdings span the globe, with many holdings shared with other governmental officials and some invested in countries with which the U.S. does not have good relations. I have a hard time imagining how Trump could ease his many, many conflicts of interest,” said Craig Holman from the consumer rights group Public Citizen.
The feeling is widespread: Richard Painter, the White House ethics lawyer for George W. Bush, and Norman Eisen, who held the same position under Obama, joined together in a Washington Post op-ed Tuesday afternoon to declare that a Trump presidency would be “ethically compromised” due to his refusal to disclose tax returns or use a blind trust.
H/T: Daly Beast.