Richard Painter

Richard Painter is vice chairman of CREW and a professor at the University of Minnesota Law School. He served as chief ethics lawyer for President George W. Bush.

Articles by this author

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Friday, May 12, 2017
Firing Comey Is Worse Than Breaking a Law
If President Trump’s shockingly sudden firing of FBI Director James Comey had violated some statute or constitutional provision, our judicial branch could easily have remedied that misstep. What the president did was worse. It was a challenge to the very premises of our system of checks and...
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Saturday, April 15, 2017
Trump's Taxes Must be Released Before Tax Reform
Many of us will fork over up to a third of our income to pay federal taxes this year and as much as half of our income in federal, state and local taxes combined. We only ask a few things in return. First, a government that spends our money wisely and does not succumb to government contractors and...
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Monday, April 03, 2017
Ethics Laws Will Sideline Jared and Ivanka
We now have information on the assets and income of two of President Trump’s closest relatives and most intimate advisers, thanks to Friday night’s White House dump of financial disclosure forms. But Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have so many potential conflicts of interest that if they abide by...
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Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Trump's Unprecedented War on Ethics
The government watchdog organization we help lead called upon the White House last week to investigate whether one of its senior officials, Christopher Liddell, violated ethics laws through acting in his official capacity to benefit his personal investments. We wish this were an isolated incident...
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Monday, February 06, 2017
The Ethics Case Against Betsy DeVos
As former ethics counsels to Presidents Obama and George W. Busy, we’ve reviewed more than our share of ethics filings for cabinet nominees. Seldom have we seen a worse cabinet-level ethics mess than that presented by Betsy DeVos, President Trump’s choice for education secretary. Her extensive...
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