Cross-posted from The Hill
A year into his administration, it’s become clear that President Donald Trump won’t voluntarily address the conflicts between his private business dealings and his role as commander in chief. His refusal to follow norms set by his predecessors and divest from his real estate empire, opting to maintain ownership of his businesses but hand operational control over to his sons, continues to raise questions about how his official actions impact his and his family’s bottom line.
Though many find this alarming, they tend to assume that there’s not much we can do about it. While some in Washington have posed reforms that touch on the president’s conflicts, many of the proposals tinker around the edges without addressing the heart of the problem. This has to do, in part, with the powerful and unique role the presidency plays: There’s a fear that any serious intervention from Congress would trample all over the separation of powers.
However, it’s time to reevaluate those assumptions. If we can no longer rely on the president to voluntarily address potential conflicts of interest, Congress can and must step in and make this president — and his successors — subject to at least some of the same rules as the millions of federal employees under them.
Read the full post on The Hill.