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White House Releases Financial Information on Staff

  • VOA News

FILE - Ivanka Trump, the daughter of President Donald Trump, and President Donald Trump's White House Senior Advisor Jared Kushner attend a joint news conference with President Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the East Room of the White House.

The White House has released a report on the personal finances of the president’s staff.

The report, released late Friday, lays out details about the assets, liabilities and income in the portfolios of what are the wealthiest White House staff members ever when they entered the White House in January and before they started selling off assets that could be considered conflicts of interest in their new posts.

The account includes data about the financial life of the president’s daughter, Ivanka, and her husband Jared Kushner, whose family is involved in real estate development in New York.

Not surprisingly, the couple holds a massive real estate and business empire worth as much as $741 million, according to The New York Times. Ivanka Trump also retains an interest in the Trump International Hotel in Washington, just a few blocks from the White House.

The financial disclosures show Kushner has resigned from at least 260 entities, corporations, groups and nonprofits since January. His wife has given up the reins of her fashion business to work in the White House.

Disclosures must be public

The financial disclosures are required by law to be made public. The report, however, did not include the Office of Government Ethics agreements with the employees on what they must do to avoid potential conflicts of interest.

Goldman Sachs COO Gary Cohn arrives at Trump Tower in New York, for a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump, Nov. 29, 2016.
Goldman Sachs COO Gary Cohn arrives at Trump Tower in New York, for a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump, Nov. 29, 2016.

Gary Cohn, a billionaire business owner and one of Trump’s top economic advisers, is also one of the wealthiest members of Trump’s staff. He left a lucrative job at Goldman Sachs where he earned at least $40 million in income from various forms of compensation, including stocks, to become Trump’s chief economic adviser.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer characterized the White House staff members as “very blessed and very successful,” saying they have given up “a lot” to go into public service.

Priebus and Bannon but not Trump

White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, who navigated the Republican Party through the victorious presidential campaign, received more than $500,000 in salary and bonuses from the Republican National Committee and earned at least $750,000 from equity buyout and partner-distribution income from the law firm Michael Best and Friedrich.

Senior adviser Steve Bannon’s pre-White House holdings were valued at between $3.3 million and $12.6 million.

Information about President Donald Trump’s assets was not included in the report. The president, unlike his predecessors, has steadfastly refused to release nearly any information about his wealth.

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