ABC News Quotes Trevor Potter and Matthew Sanderson: Donald Trump Walks Fine Ethical Line to White House
If President-elect Donald Trump decides not to liquidate his assets and put his money in a blind trust, he won't be violating the law, but breaking with 40 years of political norms set by his predecessors. Meanwhile, his ownership in 564 companies around the world means Trump will have an unprecedented potential for business and financial conflicts-of-interest.
“He could, legally, manage his business while in the White House. I don’t think he can do that politically, but he can do that legally,” said Trevor Potter, an attorney and former Republican Federal Elections Commission chairman.
“The threshold decision for Mr. Trump is whether he wants to treat the presidency as a full-time job,” added Matthew Sanderson, a Republican lawyer with Caplin & Drysdale, who suggested that Trump sell some assets to third parties, sell the remaining core business to his children and place all proceeds in a trust.
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"The proposal he has made ... is an alternative that no ethics lawyer would suggest," Potter said. "It’s a recipe for disaster for him and for his administration."
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“We have never, ever, in U.S. history had a president with either the size or the complexity or the international aspect of the holding of the president-elect,” Potter said.
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Excerpt taken from the article “Donald Trump Walks Fine Ethical Line to White House, Experts Say” by Benjamin Siegel and Lauren Pearle for ABC News.