President Elect Trump Will Not Accept Presidential Salary
December 11, 2016
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Not accepting presidential salaries dates back all the way to 1789 with George Washington’s first inaugural address. However, in Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution it states that presidents must receive compensation for holding office.
Aside from Washington, Trump is not the only president-elect to turn down the salary. Before him, it was John F. Kennedy and Herbert Hoover who both donated their salaries to charities.
By law, Trump must accept $1 of his presidential salary, but other than that he says he won’t accept the salary, claiming that it is not a big deal to him, with his 2015 income exceeding $557 million. Trump’s current net worth is estimated to be around 3.7 billion dollars.
It is not yet apparent what Trump will use the money for or put it towards since he has not elaborated very much when asked about not accepting the salary.
Trump said, “Well, I’ve never commented on this, but the answer is no, I think I have to by law take $1, so I’ll take $1 a year,” when interviewed on “60 minutes” by Leslie Stahl
As for the business, Trump said throughout the campaign that he has been distancing himself from his role in the business and that his kids will take over to avoid potential conflicts of interest. His central focus is to “make America great again.” Trump will release more information regarding his plans during an upcoming press conference on December 15.
Trump tweeted his intentions between 11:30 pm and midnight on November 29, saying that he will be removed from the business completely. However, there are no legal requirements for Trump to leave his business.
Other presidents in the past have also set aside their businesses to run The United States. Many are urging Trump to sell his business to someone without a close relationship to him to prevent financial conflicts or put his money and investments into a blind fund, but Trump is reluctant to do so. However, his children, Ivanka, Donald Jr. and Eric, still serve as political advisers for Trump, therefore, handing his business down to them doesn’t solve the “conflict of interest.”
Trump has also severely blurred the lines by having Ivanka present during meetings with the Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe. His son, Donald Jr., has also held private meetings with his father and political figures from Paris discussing conflicts in Syria.
Trump’s incoming chief of staff has refused to give details on who Trump is planning on officially handing the business to. “I’m not ready to reveal that really,” Reince Priebus, said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. He also said that Trump– “has the best people in America working on it”.