“Clearly a Violation”
Government ethics experts across the nation are denouncing Ivanka Trump’s late-night endorsement of Goya Foods as a violation of law – and ethics – especially as it comes just days after the company’s CEO appeared on national television in the Rose Garden of the White House to praise President Donald Trump.
“If it’s Goya, it has to be good,” the First Daughter and Senior Advisor to the President tweeted Tuesday night, with the statement repeated in Spanish. In her tweet Ivanka Trump is displaying a can of Goya black beans by holding it with her right hand and suggestively motioning to it with her left, as many do when endorsing a product.
If it’s Goya, it has to be good.
Si es Goya, tiene que ser bueno. pic.twitter.com/9tjVrfmo9z
— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) July 15, 2020
Walter Shaub, who has become America’s most prominent government ethics expert, weighed in Wednesday morning on Trump’s tweet with a lengthy thread on Twitter. He says her endorsement is “clearly a violation” of federal law.
“Ms. Trump’s Goya tweet is clearly a violation of the government’s misuse of position regulation, 5 C.F.R. § 2635.702. Ms. Trump has had ethics training. She knows better. But she did it anyway because no one in this administration cares about government ethics,” Shaub says.
He supports his call with several facts.
If you tout the company’s product in an obvious response to the backlash the company is facing for the CEO’s remarks about your father-president, you knowingly link your account in people’s minds to your official activities; you create the appearance of official sanction. /4
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) July 15, 2020
“There’s a particularly unseemly aspect to this violation,” Shaub adds, noting that “it creates the appearance that the government’s endorsement is for sale. Endorse the president and the administration will endorse your product.”
Shaub, who was the director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics for four and a half years, under President Barack Obama and until July of 2017, under President Trump, is far from the only government ethics expert speaking out.
NBC News Correspondent covering politics and government ethics:
Office of Govt Ethics:
“An employee shall not use his public
office for his own private gain, for the
endorsement of any product, service or
enterprise, or for the private gain of
friends, relatives, or persons with
whom the employee is affiliated”https://t.co/iA6HYvzOOy https://t.co/zpdjFDh6xz
— Heidi Przybyla (@HeidiNBC) July 15, 2020
Political scientist at the Center on American Politics at the University of Denver:
A West Wing employee is advertising a commercial product in return for that company’s CEO having endorsed the President.
People used to get fired for this shit. https://t.co/NbMhl29fXL
— Seth Masket (@smotus) July 15, 2020
Former Senior Adviser to Hillary Clinton and the DNC, former Harry Reid Communications Director:
Yeah…so this is illegal. https://t.co/wXYKdxjwrT
— Zac Petkanas (@Zac_Petkanas) July 15, 2020
Former White House Special Counsel for Ethics and Government Reform, now a Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution:
5 CFR § 2635.702(c): An employee shall not use…his government position… to endorse any product, service or enterprise.
Her Twitter bio claims account is personal but notes: “Advisor to POTUS.”
This would have been a serious offense in the Obama White House, or any other. https://t.co/SXV6vzuIeC
— Norm Eisen (@NormEisen) July 15, 2020
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Trump Openly Solicits Payment to US Treasury for His ‘Approval’ of TikTok Sale – Which He Is Forcing
President Donald Trump says he is allowing Microsoft to purchase the U.S. assets of the popular Beijing-based TikTok social media video sharing app, in a sale Trump personally is forcing.
In discussing what he sees as the broad portions of an agreement the President used a real estate term to openly solicit the payment that would have to be made to the U.S. Treasury.
“I said a very substantial portion of that price is going to have to come into the U.S. Treasury of the United States, because we’re making it possible for this deal to happen,” Trump told reporters Monday afternoon.
“Now they don’t have any rights, unless we give it to them,” Trump continued. “If we’re going to give them the rights then it has to come into this country, it’s a little like the landlord-tenant. Without a lease, the tenant has nothing, so they pay what’s called ‘key money’ or they pay something, but the United States should be reimbursed.”
Trump is actively forcing the sale of a foreign-owned company, after announcing he would ban it over the weekend. And now that he’s forcing the sale, he’s saying the U.S. should get a “substantial” cut from the sale of the company – or he will not allow it to go through.
In some states and certain situations, “key money” is illegal.
It is not known if any other U.S. company purchasing a foreign asset or company was ever required to pay what effectively sounds like a bribe.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) August 3, 2020
Swampy Trump Aide Quits After Allegation of ‘Collecting Intelligence’ for Lobbyists via National Security Officials: Report
A mere four months to the day he was announced as the new top Trump White House legislative liaison, Chris Cox is exiting the West Wing. Cox is a veteran GOP lobbyist who had suggested he was, as Politico reported, “collecting intelligence.”
Just one day earlier, in an article titled, “The swamp is coming from inside the (White) House!” Politico reported “Cox told colleagues in the White House that he was seeking information on the executive orders that President Donald Trump was readying to issue so he could brief people downtown — in other words, suggesting he wanted to give lobbyists a sneak peek.”
Politico adds that “Cox suggested while working in the White House that he was collecting intelligence or doing work after speaking to representatives and lobbyists from corporate interests.”
Also among Cox’s alleged actions: “COX emailed with fellow White House aides and officials on the National Security Council, seeking to push along an exemption for Gulfstream to deliver private jets overseas after he had a conversation with General Dynamics’ lobbyist.”
Politico called it “notable to many people at all levels of the White House that he was openly collecting political intelligence for corporate special interests and lobbyists on K Street from deep inside the sanctum of the White House.”
The White House defended Cox’s actions.
“I’m not seeing anything nefarious here,” spokesperson Judd Deere said.
Later, the White House refused to comment. 15 hours later Cox had announced he was leaving.
Politico does not reveal which National Security Council officials Cox was allegedly emailing, nor what their responses were.
Also in question is why Cox (who is not the Chris Cox formerly associated with the NRA,) would be allowed to resign instead of being fired, if the allegations are true.
On March 10 Politico reported on Cox’s hiring, noting his predecessor had left the White House for a job at a lobbying firm.
On January 28, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order banning any executive branch employee from becoming a lobbyist for five years.
‘Real Debasement’: White House Press Secretary Slammed for Message Supporting Mike Flynn
It took President Donald Trump less than five minutes to applaud the 2-1 decision of the DC Court of Appeals, ordering a federal judge to grant the Dept. of Justice its motion to dismiss all charges against admitted liar Mike Flynn.
Less than an hour later, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany tweeted a message supporting Flynn.
That message is causing a great deal of upset and anger, especially as McEnany chose to include a U.S. flag icon next to the disgraced retired general’s name.
Today’s decision by an appeals court to dismiss the case against Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn is a VICTORY for justice and truth.
All Americans are entitled to equal justice under the law and due process. No American should ever be unjustly targeted by their government.
— Kayleigh McEnany (@PressSec) June 24, 2020
Former White House press secretary Joe Lockhart, now a CNN political analyst, took particular exception to the move, calling it a “real debasement” of the American flag.
Putting the America flag next to the criminal Michael Flynn is the real debasement of our flag. https://t.co/ob10OgliSK
— Joe Lockhart (@joelockhart) June 24, 2020
Lockhart wasn’t finished:
This is the latest example of how far we’ve fallen as a nation. Someone who plead guilty and acknowledged and admitting committing felonies is a “victory for justice and truth.” I,for one, is damned tired of this shit happening. https://t.co/ob10OgliSK
— Joe Lockhart (@joelockhart) June 24, 2020
Many others responded to McEnany:
He admitted to lying to the FBI, Kayleigh.
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) June 24, 2020
Flynn pleaded guilty twice. This decision will probably be heard en banc. We’ll see what happens then.
— Andrew C Laufer, Esq (@lauferlaw) June 24, 2020
Why did Donald Trump fire him?
He lied to the FBI, and either he lied to the rest of the Trump Administration, or the rest of the Trump Administration is lying about that.
Corruption has never been so corrupt.
— JRehling (@JRehling) June 24, 2020
If you plead guilty to a crime twice under oath before a judge, why does that make you innocent? Is that what they taught you at @Harvard_Law ? Flynn betrayed America and you’re cheering. What is wrong with you? #FlynnIsATraitor #GOPComplicitTraitors #GOPCorruptionOverCountry
— James (@JamesSNYC) June 24, 2020
FLYNN PLEAD GUILTY…… FUCKING TWICE
You lie to the American people on an hourly basis
— Holden Mirror (@HoldenMirror) June 24, 2020
Nonsense. It’s a sham written by a Trump appointee, and a debasement of the notion of an independent judiciary, and you, as a Harvard Law grad, should understand this, but you know, hypocrisy.
— Rogue Ivanka (Parody Account) (@MarALagoPoolBoy) June 24, 2020
Trump world is pushing an exceptionally bizarre and dishonest misreading of the DC Cir. opinion. The issue is about a federal court’s ability to get answers regarding politicization and irregularity in DOJ decision making. It is in no way a substantive vindication of Flynn. https://t.co/fBxuAmsxsK
— Susan Hennessey (@Susan_Hennessey) June 24, 2020
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