President and business what will become of trump’s businesses?

This has never happened before either: With Donald Trump, a businessman as prominent as he is controversial becomes president of the United States. Into the White House accompany him billion-dollar entrepreneurial self-interests as well as numerous legal disputes.

With his political decisions, he can influence the well-being of his corporate empire in the future – analysts warn of “unprecedented conflicts of interest”. To avoid becoming a big-time profiteer of President Trump, the businessman promises to spin off his real estate and business interests into an independent trust company. Trump does not formally have any control over this investment vehicle, known in the trade as a blind trust. “We’re going to do it legally,” Trump’s adviser Michael Cohen assured CNN. This way is not unusual; presidents like Reagan, Clinton or Bush also chose such solutions.

But this time things are a little different. Heading the “Trump Organization,” the umbrella of the corporate empire, in the future will be Trump’s children Don, Eric and Ivanka. Control would remain in the family, which is also strongly involved politically.

Conflicts of interest are programmed in other areas as well. So negotiators are likely to find it hard to ignore the fact that they are dealing with emissaries of the U.S. president. If nothing else, it’s part of Trump’s business model to put his name on products and buildings like a thick rubber stamp.

The term “blind trust” is inaccurate anyway on closer examination, says expert Norm Eisen of the Washington think tank Brookings Institution. To truly ensure he cedes all influence, Trump would have to liquidate his assets. Then independent trustees would have to build a new portfolio, the composition of which he himself does not know. However, he said, this is practically impossible. This is because Trump’s assets are mainly in real estate, which cannot usually be turned into cash so quickly.

But would Trump really be trusted with the ruthlessness to exploit the new power for his own business advantage? So far, at least, there is little to suggest that he is particularly keen to avoid the impression of a shameless mixing of political and business interests. That was evident during the campaign, for example, in the conflict over Trump University, which the businessman allegedly used to defraud numerous people.

One might assume that a legal dispute with students who feel they have been ripped off would be an unpleasant chapter for an aspiring U.S. president to close as quickly as possible. Not so for Trump. He announced back in June, confident of victory, that he would reopen Trump University, which closed in 2010 after allegations of fraud, “after the case is won”. Interest is huge because he “will be president,” Trump announced.

The Trump University case had already made headlines during the pre-election campaign because Trump had accused the judge in charge, Gonzalo Curiel, of bias because of his Mexican roots. Ultimately, though, the case is just the tip of an iceberg of legal skirmishes that Trump brings to the Oval Office from his entrepreneurial career as a thuggish real estate tycoon.

According to a comprehensive analysis by the U.S. newspaper USA Today, 75 cases against Trump are still ongoing. Over the past 30 years, the 70-year-old businessman has been involved in around 4.000 legal disputes have been involved. As an aggressive construction lion and, later, vain reality TV star, complaining and being sued were apparently part of everyday life for Trump. For a U.S. president, however, that would be quite unusual to be. Entering government office with such legal burdens – a historical first.

The entrepreneurial back story also holds geopolitical explosiveness. Trump’s business ties, according to U.S. media, extend as far as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates or China – countries with which the U.S. has delicate diplomatic relations. In addition, Deutsche Bank of all banks is an important lender. The financial institution is currently wrestling with the U.S. judiciary over a billion-dollar settlement for windy mortgage transactions.

In addition, Trump is known to radically exploit tax benefits and subsidies with his companies. While he promised during the election campaign to shift his focus as president from self-interest to the common good. But whether Trump would really make decisions in the interests of U.S. citizens, from which his businesses suffer? Legal expert Ken Gross is skeptical: “He will face conflicts of interest almost daily,” he told The Washington Post. The scale of the implication is unprecedented, he said.

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