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Public Citizen Will Be On Trumps Behind From Day One


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Here’s the strategy:

  • --- We will uncover the corruption in everything Donald Trump does.
  • --- We will call out Trump’s wholesale handover of our government to Big Business.
  • --- We will expose Trump for his complete and utter betrayal of populist promises he made as a candidate.
  • --- We will organize people around the country to stand up to Trump’s hate and lies.
  • --- We will make sure our allies in the U.S. Senate block passage of an extremist corporate agenda that would sacrifice hard-won health and safety protections, basic norms of justice and equality, and our planet’s sustainability to further enrich the corporate class.
  • And, whenever we can, we will sue to block Trump’s unconstitutional power grabs.

Read on for much more about how this will unfold.


We continue to pound Trump for his unprecedented conflicts of interest.

Trump canceled the news conference (Will he ever hold one again?) where he was supposedly going to unveil his “solution” to the conflicts. But we know from Trump’s tweets that he intends only to end his involvement in day-to-day operations — while retaining a full ownership stake in his corporate empire.

In countless media interviews, we’ve been crystal clear about the acid test for Trump’s conflicts of interest: Will he sell his business, yes or no?

Now we know the answer is no.

It’s nice, I guess, that the president of the United States might not be distracted by picking bathroom tiles for his hotels.

But the conflicts of interest from his global empire remain.

That means Trump will continue to have the conflicts from business operations in more than 20 countries around the world. He will continue to have the conflicts from owning a luxury hotel just a few blocks from the White House that diplomats openly state they will patronize to curry his favor. And he will continue to have the inescapable, all-encompassing conflicts from business holdings that give him a direct financial interest in policy matters from consumer protection to taxation, bankruptcy to labor rights.

We’re not letting go of this issue, and it’s not going away.

That’s because these conflicts really will pervade policymaking in the administration. The more we can point it out, the more we can show that Trump is making a mockery of his campaign promises to root out corruption, cronyism and insider dealing.

Last week — in close consultation with Public Citizen — Senator Elizabeth Warren announced that she will introduce legislation when Congress reconvenes that would require Trump to sellhis businesses.

We’re going to mobilize public support around that bill. We expect to get all Democratic senators to co-sponsor, and we will challenge Republicans — many of whom are also uncomfortable with Trump’s global entanglements — to sign on as well.

Meanwhile, Congress will reconvene at the beginning of January and very quickly plunge into hearings on Trump’s atrocious, Robber Baron-esque cabinet picks and agency appointments.

We’ll launch an edgy, dynamic and deeply researched “Corporate Cabinet” website revealing the business connections and profound revolving-door problems surrounding Trump’s selections.

  • Trump — who ran against Goldman Sachs by name as a candidate — has selected a Goldman Sachs veteran (and foreclosure king) as his Treasury Secretary, Goldman Sachs’ president as his number two economic advisor and a Goldman Sachs-alumni-turned-racist-business-mogul as his chief White House strategist.
  • To run the Labor Department, Trump has tapped a fast-food tycoon whose companies have racked up a record of labor law violations and who opposes raising the minimum wage, ensuring overtime pay for millions of workers and providing sick leave.
  • Trump’s choice to run the Environmental Protection Agency has actually sued that very agency to block implementation of arguably its most important program ever, the Clean Power Plan, which would reduce dangerous greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The pick to run the Pentagon left the military and promptly landed on the boards of directors of General Dynamics, one of the largest defense contractors, and Theranos, the disgraced biotech firm beleaguered by allegations that it lied about its purported breakthrough blood testing technology.
  • Last but certainly not least, Trump has named Rex Tillerson — CEO of Exxon Mobil, the sixth largest corporation on Earth — who has no foreign policy experience but deep ties to Russia, as his Secretary of State.

Through cutting-edge reports, social media, newspapers, radio and TV, and much more, we’re going to highlight this rogues’ gallery’s history of law-breaking, how their corporate ties will corrupt policymaking, and how their reactionary views will harm everyday Americans.

We’re going to work with Senate allies to make sure tough questions are asked at confirmation hearings.

We’re going to mobilize our hundreds of thousands of supporters, and work in connection with allies, to demand senators vote down this corporate cabinet.

We don’t have illusions about this work. Most of these people will be confirmed, no matter their disqualifications. But in having the fight, we will show that we won’t succumb to the corporate takeover of our government. And we’re going to erode Trump’s base of support, as we show again and again that he is drawing on a wellspring of connected cronies, in total defiance of his campaign commitments.

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