Society

White House: Trump Has Resigned From His Businesses

| by Lauren Briggs

President Donald Trump has stepped down from positions at hundreds of his businesses, the White House announced.

CNN reporter Jim Acosta first reported on Twitter that White House strategic communications director Hope Hicks shared the news on Jan. 23.

The announcement is in line with a promise Trump made earlier in January that he would resign to focus his full attention on the presidency, as well as to eliminate potential conflicts of interest, notes Business Insider.

Trump said at the time that his two adult sons, Eric and Donald Jr., would join a senior Trump Organization executive to run his companies in his stead, while he would have little to no involvement.

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On the same day, the Trump Organization sent a 19-page letter, signed by the president, to CNN, stating "I, Donald J. Trump, hereby resign from each and every office and position I hold..."

Dated Jan. 19, the day before he was sworn in as president, the letter goes on to list more than 400 business entities from which he said he was stepping down.

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According to White House press secretary Sean Spicer, the two elder Trump sons are "fully in charge of the company" as of Jan. 23, CNN reports.

The president has also reportedly transferred his business holdings to a trust run by his sons, although critics say he is still not doing enough to avoid ethical dilemmas, particularly since he has not sold his ownership stake and will still receive reports on the Trump Organization's overall profits.

An ethics group filed a federal lawsuit against Trump on Jan. 23 regarding the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which bars the president from receiving payment from foreign governments.

"It clearly doesn't resolve the conflict of interest or Emoluments problem since this doesn't deal with his financial interests," said Larry Noble of the Campaign Legal Center.

Private trust expert and Cedar Rowe Partners partner Charlie Douglas said Trump resigning from his companies is a step in the right direction, but called on the Trump Organization to follow up appropriately by showing who has stepped in for Trump in each case, among others.

"He can resign in a day, but that doesn't tell the whole story of what happens to the companies," Douglas explained.

Sources: Business Insider, Jim Acosta/Twitter, CNN Money, Trump Organization via Document Cloud / Photo Credit: Donald J. Trump/Facebook

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