“It is uncharted territory, really in the history of the republic, as we have never had a president with such an empire both in the United States and overseas,” said Michael J. Green, who served on the National Security Council in the administration of George W. Bush, and before that at the Defense Department.
The globe is dotted with such potential conflicts. Mr. Trump’s companies have business operations in at least 20 countries, with a particular focus on the developing world, including outposts in nations like India, Indonesia and Uruguay, according to a New York Times analysis of his presidential campaign financial disclosures. What’s more, the true extent of Mr. Trump’s global financial entanglements is unclear, since he has refused to release his tax returns and has not made public a list of his lenders.
In an interview with The Times on Tuesday, Mr. Trump boasted again about the global reach of his business — and his family’s ability to keep it running after he takes office.
“I’ve built a very great company and it’s a big company and it’s all over the world,” Mr. Trump said, adding later: “I don’t care about my company. It doesn’t matter. My kids run it.”
There has been a lot of hand-wringing and attention devoted to trying to suss-out what Donald Trump will do in the future. And that’s understandable—he made a lot of grandiose statements, some of which will potentially impact the lives of millions of people. But this conflict of interest stuff regarding his business interests and the Trump brand? I’m going on record here, today, as saying that, if there is a fall from grace for President-Elect Donald J. Trump, it will be because of what is uncovered, or even more likely, because of what is covered-up, regarding where or who he received money from in a business transaction.
Al Capone didn’t go to prison because of the murders, or the booze smuggling, or the racketeering, or the prostitutes. He went to prison because he didn’t pay his taxes.