Trump Conflict Plan Woefully Inadequate
Statement by Common Cause Vice President for Policy & Litigation Paul S. Ryan
President-elect Trump’s planned arrangement with the Trump Organization falls far short of what’s necessary to avoid conflicts of interest and Emoluments Clause violations that will dog his administration and severely undermine the public’s faith in government. Common Cause has called on President-elect Trump to divest from the Trump Organization and put his wealth into a blind trust managed independently from him. Instead, he’s decided to retain full ownership of the Trump Organization and have two of his sons run it—no divestment and no independence.
These are the same two sons who recently had their name attached to an inauguration fundraiser that promised access to their father for those willing to pay $1 million dollars. The event was cancelled but the precedent was troubling.
The American public must now demand complete transparency of the Trump Organization and President-elect Trump’s finances. Such transparency is America’s only hope for protecting itself against conflicts of interest and Emoluments Clause violations—and holding President-elect Trump accountable for his promises to avoid conflicts and violations of the constitution.
The President-elect must take additional steps immediately to safeguard the integrity of the office of the President. To begin with, Trump must release his taxes and quit hiding the facts and the potential conflicts from the American people. At today’s press conference, when asked to release his tax returns, the President-elect rejected the request and claimed that the “only one that cares about my tax returns are the reporters.” Common Cause’s more than 700,000 members and supporters care about the President-elect’s tax returns and additional financial disclosure. We demand it.
To view this statement online, click here.
Common Cause is a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1970 by John Gardner as a vehicle for citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their elected leaders accountable to the public interest.