“Trump’s Conflicts of Interest”: what can be done?

Had a Thanksgiving. My whole family is in agreement: a state of shock, horror, disgust, contempt and rage, so we didn’t had to face that “how to get through Thanksgiving without fighting” problem.

One important subject of conversation and questioning was NMP’s immense and naked conflicts between his business interests and…you know. Government. Us.

Because we’re pretty well educated in my family and quite thoughtful–you know, that liberal elite shtick–we were asking what mechanism our governing documents might provide to deal with Trump’s conflicts.

None of us has the sort of great depth of knowledge about the Constitution–not the 4900 word one but the whole thing it’s evolved into after these 228 years (check me here; I had to use my calculator)–to know what specific actions could be taken against Trump.

I was therefore relieved and pleased to read this, from The Atlantic: an interview with Norman Eisen (see his credentials below), by Matt Ford. That is, an expert legal view.

A conversation with Norman Eisen, former White House ethics czar, about the legal challenges facing the president-elect.

Source: Norm Eisen Untangles Trump’s Conflicts of Interest – The Atlantic

To give you a tickle of how clarifying and energizing this interview is, here are two questions Ford presented to Eisen and the mere first sentences of Eisen’s replies. But you’ll want to read the entire interview. It’ll make you feel much better, even better than the soothing aspects of l-tryptophan you got in your turkey.

Matt Ford: So let’s start with a baseline: How does this ethics situation normally work for presidents?

Norman Eisen: Not like this.

OK. So, next question:

Ford: President-elect Trump told the New York Times on Tuesday: “The law’s totally on my side, the president can’t have a conflict of interest.” Is that true?

Eisen: He is wrong.


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