The Intolerable Conflict of Interest Trump Has With American Taxpayers


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Release of tax returns by Presidential candidates is not associated with a Republican or Democrat candidate.  Instead it is something candidates from both parties do in an effort to provide relevant and informative information.  Both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders released their returns. Even Tim Kane and Mike Pence released their returns.  In fact every Republican who ran during the last nine Presidential cycles has released their returns.

Yet Trump refused …and continues to refuse to release his returns.  His excuse is an  an IRS audit. Presidential candidates are not required to release tax returns, but the information helps the public vet a candidate’s finances, revealing information such as charitable giving, investments and the tax rate he pays.  The IRS has said recently that an audit does not bar a person from releasing their own tax information.

In a May 15 interview with Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus,Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace noted that it’s become customary over the past several decades for presidential candidates to release their tax returns.  Mr. Priebus has been appointed as the Chief of Staff of Donald Trump.  Thus, Trump’s own Chief of Staff has indicated that Trump has deviated from the customary practice of presidential candidates.  Now that Trump is the President-elect, it is more critical than ever that his person tax returns be produced.  The potential for a conflict of interest is only one of the many reasons that there be transparency in Donald Trump’s financial matters.

 In fact, the Conflict of Interest of Donald Trump and his children has already been established through Freedom of Information Act Disclosures.

“Documents obtained through a Freedom Of Information Act request reveal that the conflicts on interest run deep as President-Elect Donald Trump has been using government contracts to enrich the very children that he now wants national security clearance for.”

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According to Unredacted: the national security archive, “Documents won three months ago in response to a FOIA appeal show that during Donald Trump’s re-development of the taxpayer-owned Old Post Office building in downtown D.C. into a luxury hotel, Trump “funneled money to his children through separate companies bearing each of the children’s names, and the document indicates that those companies did not invest money. Nevertheless, their stakes could earn the children a big chunk of any profits generated from the taxpayer-owned site.”

The arrangement that the president-elect is proposing is ripe for conflict of interest problems. Trump wants the same kids who have already been enriched by government contracts to have national security clearance, and also run the Trump Organization.

Trump never disclosed to voters during the campaign that he funneled money to his kids through government contracts, and it is fairly easy to connect the dots and see that as president, Trump would have total power to continue this arrangement.

 

This is sort of thing that happens in authoritarian regimes. It is not supposed to happen in the United States of America. The stage is potentially being set for Trump to use the White House for personal profit and enrichment.

The point is that the conflicts of interest aren’t limited to the next president.

Voters may have sent an entire corrupt family enterprise of tangled conflicts of interest to the White House.

The consequences of this decision may get ugly very quickly for the American people.

 

Now that Trump is the president-elect, Donald Trump’s new hotel in Washington, D.C., located blocks from the White House, threatens to become a very obvious way for foreign diplomats to ingratiate themselves with the new president.  A Washington Post report published Friday featured interviews with dozens of diplomats, many of whom requested anonymity and some of whom said they would stay at the new Trump International Hotel in order to please Trump. About 100 foreign diplomats gathered at the hotel this week to discuss building ties with Trump’s administration, the Post reported. While there, many heard sales pitches about the hotel.

“The temptation and the inclination will certainly be there,” Arturo Sarukhan, a former Mexican ambassador to the United States, told the Post. “Some might think it’s the right way to engage, to be able to tell the next president, ‘Oh, I stayed at your hotel.’ If I were still in government, I would discourage it, among other reasons because it can be questioned and looked at in a very poor light, as though you are trying to buy influence via a hotel bill.”

The report comes as Trump faces a flood of questions about whether his businesses will create conflicts of interest when he becomes president. Trump has said he will leave his children in charge of his businesses when he takes office, but that solution is complicated by his children’s heavy involvement in his newfound political career.

Mickael Damelincourt, general manager of the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C., told the Post that interest was surging ahead of the inauguration, though most hotels in the city typically witness increased interest for the big event. “I got 50 calls in the last day, from some very important people, and we have no space,” he said, while adding that he doesn’t think Trump’s election victory was a factor.

It may be time to file another FOIA request, asking for the tax returns of Donald Trump. Stay Tuned!

10 thoughts on “The Intolerable Conflict of Interest Trump Has With American Taxpayers

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  1. Malia — the Appointments Trump is making will attract more such scrutiny. Lt-Gen. Flynn as national security advisor is one such person. Huff Post has a good article today on his conflicts of interest. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/mike-flynn-turkey-coup_us_58324909e4b099512f8376d4
    I think we can expect a batch of such articles as Trump’s announcements roll off the assembly line.

    I loved these two responses posted on HuffPost about Flynn’s appointment:
    * If this is an example of “extreme vetting”, then Muslims wishing to enter the country should be breathing a little easier.
    and
    * The 19th century gave us Boss Tweed, one of the most corrupt politicians ever. I think he will now be relegated to 2nd place by Boss Tweet.

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  2. Its bad Malia. like it was said, our sara on steroids. I’m damn near speechless. New Rule. Americans should know the darkest secrets prior to nomination process. A complete background check prior to nomination and available to all journalist and public.

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      1. Gosh. I was under the impression that the FEC, Federal Election Commission would do security background checks on a candidate and his associations. But clearly it is not their job. This job belongs to john q public and jane doe.

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  3. Am I the only one who scrolled through the whole article first and at first glance of that one photo, thought it was of some sort of Nazi headquarters (complete with military guards at the entrances)? Then I saw the row of American Flags. I thought I’d seen red and black swastika flags.the first time! Oh well, what’s the difference? History repeats itself.

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  4. I guess Trump, like Nixon, is above the law! This is unacceptable. He must be called on the carpet, but we all know he will do as he pleases, as all narcissists do. HELP!

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  5. A conversation with God about Trump

    John (while writing Revelations): “So, Lord, the end will be signaled by trumpets?”
    God: “No I said Trump/Pence.”
    John: Yeah, trumpets.
    God: “Never mind. They’ll know.”

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