BestCashCow first projected that Trump’s extreme and malignant narcissism would cause him to fail properly to divorce from his assets in a way that would call into question his independence, his freedom from the emoluments clause, and his and his family’s liability.
Many well-versed in the law and in trusts maintained that Morgan, Lewis and Bockius, Donald Trump’s law firm, would put together an air-tight, yet complicated, ownership structure. A smart ownership structure would use his ascendency to the presidency as an opportunity to pass his assets to his children and grandchildren with limited tax liability, while assuring that he would have all of his needs met for the rest of his life should he be removed from the presidency.
Following this weekend’s release of the trust documents under the Freedom of Information Act, it is very clear that everything, including the lease on the Old Post Office Building in Washington, has passed into the Donald J. Trump REVOCABLE Trust. President Trump is the only beneficial owner of the trust, but the trust is run by his son and chief financial officer. There is no legal impediment to Donald Trump’s receipt of information on the trust assets and their performance (as Sheri A. Dillon proclaimed in her January 11, 2017 news conference) and the trust is revocable at any time.
In short, Donald Trump’s law firm has done nothing, absolutely nothing, to separate Trump from his assets and the ethical liabilities that those assets create, save to introduce a single legal entity, wholly owned by Donald Trump himself.
The new administration – and the Republican Congress – are bent on exploiting the government for their own self-interests. Inherent in that goal is an assumption that the majority of the population at large is totally indifferent to, or unable to understand, the color of the wool being pulled over their eyes. In this case, there is no smoke, no mirrors, and the wool can be seen right through.