“With his Twitter blast at Nordstrom, President Donald Trump sparked fresh concerns that he and his family are using the Oval Office for personal gain,” CNBC is reporting.
“Trump accused the department store on Wednesday of treating his daughter Ivanka ‘unfairly’ prompting its stock to drop briefly before it recovered. The president’s tweet came days after the department store chain said it would not sell his daughter’s brand in the upcoming season due to sagging performance.
“Trump’s tweet pulled him back into a debate over whether he did enough to distance himself from his family’s businesses when he took office. The president chose not to divest from the Trump Organization, handing control to his two eldest sons and a company executive.
“While the Trump Organization said Ivanka Trump stepped down from her roles there, she licenses her name to merchandise manufacturers, who then sell products at stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s, according to The New York Times. It’s not clear if she still receives royalties from her clothing licensing.
“Trump’s criticism of a company that distanced itself from his daughter’s brand shows ‘un-presidential behavior and potentially much worse,’ said Richard Painter, a former top White House ethics lawyer under President George W. Bush.
“‘It is the use of public office for private gain,’ he said.
“Later Wednesday, White House spokesman Sean Spicer called Nordstrom’s move an ‘attack’ on Ivanka Trump based on her father’s policies and argued that he should have the ability to defend her. Asked whether Nordstrom’s decision matters since Ivanka Trump said she stepped down from her companies, Spicer said it still damages a brand that carries her name.
“‘I think this was less about the family business than an attack on his daughter,’ the White House press secretary said.
“Ivanka Trump’s brand makes the largest share of its sales from licensed clothing like the products sold at department stores, according to the Times. Her father also increasingly turned to brand licensing in his ventures before he took office.”
The rest of the article is here.