ABC News Quotes Matthew Sanderson on Rex Tillerson's ExxonMobil Stock Sale
Rex Tillerson -- the ExxonMobil chairman and CEO tapped to be the next secretary of state -- must by law put his financial assets into a blind trust or equivalent, legal experts told ABC News. Unlike his future boss Donald Trump, if confirmed Tillerson will be subject to a federal conflicts of interest law (18 U.S. Code § 208), which prohibits most federal officials from participating in government matters in which they or their family have a financial interest. The president and vice president are exempt from this rule.
Richard Painter, the chief White House ethics lawyer for former President George W. Bush, said that Tillerson must go further than simply moving his assets into a blind trust -- he must divest them. “Absolutely, he must give up all stock and stock options in Exxon and distance himself from oil company executives,” Painter told ABC News.
“Resolving the stock conflict through a sale is easy, since the ExxonMobil stock is frequently traded,” noted Matthew Sanderson, a Republican lawyer with Caplin & Drysdale.
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Excerpt taken from the article “Why Rex Tillerson Has to Untangle Himself From His Business and Investments” by Lauren Pearle for ABC News.