As we move into the second half of the Trump administration, it’s worth paying attention to the growing list of companies and individuals that have been accused of engaging in questionable ethics practices, according to a new report by the nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics.
“Companies that do business with the Trump campaign and/or the president and the president-elect may have been engaged in questionable activities while conducting business,” the report found.
“Some of these activities were illegal under existing law, while others were likely not.”
As part of a larger analysis, the report also found that the Trump Organization was “not yet fully aware of all of the questionable practices.”
“While it is impossible to determine whether or not the activities of the President Elect and his family members were criminal in nature, these activities raise concerns about the ethical standards of Trump Organization companies,” the center said.
The group called for an independent investigation into whether the Trump family or their associates violated ethics laws in a number of ways, including their dealings with foreign entities, their hiring of foreign employees, and their failure to disclose certain financial transactions.
“The President-Elect’s use of foreign entities to purchase properties and properties-in-transit, including in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act-is especially troubling, given that the President-elect has repeatedly said he will not do business in countries that do not uphold the rule of law,” the group wrote.
“Trump Organization employees have also been accused by numerous sources of violating ethical standards, including the emoluments clause of the Constitution, as well as the Logan Act.”
In response to the report, the Trump transition team called the report “fake news” and a “distraction from the real issues.”
Trump has been the target of an ethics investigation for decades, which has dogged his presidential campaign.
The report found that in the years before his presidential bid, the company has received more than $1 billion from foreign governments.
Trump has defended his business dealings by saying that he has never engaged in business in which he was personally compensated.