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Ethics Documents Suggest Conflict Of Fascination By Trump Adviser

Enlarge this imageWhite Dwelling Director of Strategic Initiatives Christopher Liddell (from remaining) with Dell CEO Michael Dell and Common Dynamics CEO Phebe Novakovic during a gathering with President Trump on Feb. 23.Evan Vucci/APhide captiontoggle captionEvan Vucci/APWhite Property Director of Strategic Initiatives Christopher Liddell (from still left) with Dell CEO Michael Dell and Standard Dynamics CEO Phebe Novakovic through a meeting with President Trump on Feb. 23.Evan Vucci/APFederal records indicate that a vital adviser to President Trump held significant investments in 18 providers when he joined Trump in meetings with their CEOs. The investments of Christopher Liddell, the president’s director of strategic initiatives, totaled among $3 million and $4 million. One of the busine ses in Liddell’s portfolio, and whose CEOs were being while in the meetings: Dell Systems, Dow Chemical, Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan Chase, Lockheed Martin and Wal-Mart. When Trump conferred with the chiefs of Ford, Typical Motors and Fiat-Chrysler last month, Liddell attended the se sion. He was invested in all three corporations at the time.Politics Trump Ethics Monitor: Has The President Kept His Promises? Details of Liddell’s investments are contained in paperwork he filed with the White Residence ethics officer in preparation for divesting his holdings. He was seeking certificates of divestiture, which allow federal appointees to defer paying capital-gains taxes by reinvesting in a blind trust or similar arrangement. The watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington filed a complaint Tuesday with White House Counsel Donald McGahn, raising concerns that Liddell may have violated the federal conflict of fascination law, a criminal statute. The complaint states: „If Mr. Liddell personally participated in meetings with busine ses in which he held significant amounts of stock, he may have violated these rules.“ The White Property responded with this statement: „Mr. Liddell has been working with the Office of the White Household Counsel to ensure he is fully compliant with Gerald Green Jersey his legal and ethical obligations in connection with his holdings and his duties within the White Household.“ Liddell was born in New Zealand and is a U.S. citizen. During the past he has worked as chief financial officer of Ford Motors, International Paper and Microsoft.It’s not clear whether Liddell now has sold off his investments, but he apparently had not done so before the meetings in question. The meetings ended up held on Jan. 23, Jan. 24 and Feb. 3. On Feb. 9, the Office of Government Ethics i sued four certificates of divestiture for Liddell and his wife. They would be worthle s if the a sets had already been sold. The complaint is one of several actions by CREW on White House ethics i sues. The group says in a lawsuit that Trump is violating the Constitution’s ban on foreign emoluments (gifts); it has questioned the ethics of presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway after she urged TV viewers to buy Ivanka Trump’s fashion merchandise; and it challenged the lack of transparency of two White Dwelling advisory committees. CREW Director Noah Bookbinder said of the White Residence, „It seems nobody is concerned about people making decisions based on their personal interests and not the interests of the American people.“

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