Trump at Odds with Main Street Over Business Conflicts

Small business owners fear that Mr. Trump will place his own financial gains ahead of the country’s financial and economic health

After promising to address the conflicts of interest presented by his domestic and foreign business dealings, Mr. Trump muddied the waters and sewed further doubt in his ability to govern in the best interest of Main Street Alliance member businesses and conduct himself with the same degree of integrity and propriety.

Amid mounting evidence that his businesses are heavily leveraged to domestic and foreign investors, Mr. Trump appears to be sidestepping the norms of the Presidency that exist to protect the office from inherently unethical individual conflicts of interest. Insisting he is not required to isolate himself from his business interests and that the Emoluments Clause did not apply to him, Mr. Trump rejected calls to divest from his business interests in favor of presenting his interpretation of the law.

“By commingling his business dealings with his duties as the incoming President in a way that no previous president has, Donald Trump is eroding the transparency and fairness we need from government,” said Amanda Ballantyne, National Director for Main Street Alliance, a national small business organization. “Mr. Trump’s outside interests and his heavy leverage to countries we do business with creates significant potential for corruption, abuse of power, and the delegitimization of U.S. authority around the world.”

Mr. Trump’s refusal to establish a blind trust while holding office is unprecedented and stands in direct conflict with his ability to govern in the best interest of small business owners and our customers. His financial ties and contracts held with large corporations put him in direct competition with small business owners, a position no President has held before him.  And in doing so, he failed to ensure the American people and the business community that we can rely on the incoming administration to preserve the economic health and wellbeing of our nation.

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