News & Politics

Trump Makes a Big Announcement About His Businesses and the Presidency

Donald Trump, seeking contestants for "The Apprentice" television show, is interviewed at Universal Studios Hollywood Friday, July 9, 2004, in the Universal City section of Los Angeles. Trump is casting for "The Apprentice" the third season. (AP Photo/Ric Francis)

President-elect Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he will set aside the running of his businesses in order to focus entirely on the presidency. In a string of tweets, he declared that “the Presidency is a far more important task.”

Trump announced a business conference on Thursday, December 15, to flesh out the announcement.

The president-elect said he would be leaving his “great business in total in order to fully focus on running the country in order to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” He insisted that he is not “mandated” to do so “under the law,” but added, “I feel it is visually important, as President, to in no way have a conflict of interest with my various businesses.”

Trump furthermore announced that “legal documents are being crafted which take me completely out of business operations. The Presidency is a far more important task!”

This announcement should assuage some criticism that the president-elect would govern in the interests of his business empire, but further details will be forthcoming.

Next Page: What Reince Priebus had to say about this announcement.

In an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” incoming White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus said he was “not ready to reveal” whether or not the businesses would be handed over to Trump’s children, as announced previously.

“This is the first president we’ve had at least in modern history that’s had so many successful businesses and so many diverse areas across the country and in many cases retail and hospitality business that is dependent on people’s business,” Priebus said, acknowledging that “it’s not the easiest thing to work out.”

The incoming chief of staff sought to assure audiences that Trump had “the best people in America working on it.” Priebus argued that this announcement shows Trump to be the kind of president who takes people’s concerns seriously. “I think what you should see in these tweets is a person at the top that understands and is willing and showing the American people that he’s working hard on it and he’s taking it seriously.”

The announcement on December 15 should provide more details as to how Trump will avoid any potential conflicts of interest between his businesses and his administration. Stay tuned.