Politics & Government

Trump postpones announcement on how he will handle his businesses, avoid conflicts

Traffic passes Trump Tower, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, in New York.
Traffic passes Trump Tower, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, in New York. AP

President-elect Donald Trump will not hold a press conference Thursday to explain what he plans to do with his businesses to avoid conflict of interest, according to multiple media reports and confirmed by his transition team.

The announcement has been moved to January.

“With so many iconic properties and successful entities, moving the announcement to January, ensures the legal team has ample time to ensure the proper protocols are put in place so his sole focus will remain on the country and achieving his ambitious agenda,” Sean Spicer wrote in an email to The Washington Post.

Bloomberg first reported the delay.

Donald J. Trump is a prolific, if controversial, businessman. Here, we examine some of his ventures to find out how they fared, including Trump University. Of the roughly 60 endeavors started or promoted by Trump during the past decade, one-third

Trump tweeted on Nov. 30 that he planned to hold a news conference in New York City on Dec. 15 to “discuss the fact that I will be leaving my great business in total in order to fully focus on running the country.”

The New York Times reported on Dec. 7 that Trump intended to keep a stake in his business, while turning over operational responsibility to sons Eric and Don Jr.

According to Bloomberg, Trump has a net worth of $3 billion, liquid assets of $170 million and debts of $630 million.

After Trump’s tweets on Nov. 30, the U.S. Office of Government Ethics sent out a string of tweets praising Trump’s decision to divest from his business interests, though Trump never indicated he planed to completely divest.

Trump could face trouble if he keeps his businesses, according to ethics experts.

"Initially, it’s a little worrying that Trump has pushed his plan to deal with conflicts of interest to some unnamed time in the future. Hopefully this is a signal that he’s taking the issue very seriously and putting together a plan to deal with the myriad of conflicts his business brings by selling the business and putting the proceeds in a true blind trust, rather than using this as a stall tactic like he did to avoid releasing his tax returns after promising them,” said Noah Bookbinder, the executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington in a statement released Monday night.

Inauguration Day is Friday, Jan. 20. The 538 individual electors are set to vote on Dec. 19.

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