During his press conference, President-Elect Donald Trump announced that he’s donating all profits from foreign government payments made to his hotels to the U.S. Treasury. What exactly does this mean?
Here’s what you need to know.
Trump is making these donations in reference to concerns about the Emoluments Clause. According to the clause, which is in Article 1, Section 9, Clause 8:
No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”
Trump’s ethics lawyer, Sheri Dillon, stressed during the press conference that Trump’s hotels’ receiving these payments did not violate the Emoluments Clause. But he was making the move to help taxpayers in the United States and to calm concerns about profits from foreign governments and to avoid any possible conflicts of interest.
Not everyone’s satisfied with the decision. Critics are saying that it’s still not enough to guarantee a lack of foreign influence, because his use of the word “profits” indicates that revenue will likely still be used for overhead and salaries first.
This is definitely an unexpected move and quite unprecedented. Exactly how it will work out remains to be seen.
Here are a few reactions on social media to the announcement: