White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Monday declined to produce proof that President Donald Trump had resigned from his businesses.
At his first White House press conference, Spicer was asked if the new president would release documents showing that his businesses had officially been placed in the hands of his sons, Eric and Donald Jr.
“I believe we have,” Spicer replied.
But the press secretary was quickly correct by White House staffer Hope Hicks, who said that the documents “are not public.”
“Yeah, but he has resigned from the company as he said he would before he took office,” Spicer insisted. “Don and Eric are fully in charge of the company. He’s taking extraordinary steps to ensure that that’s happened.”
ProPublic reported that the claim was simply not true as of last Friday.
ProPublica looked at more than a dozen of Trump’s largest companies, which are registered or incorporated in three states. Officials in New York and Delaware said documents are logged as soon as they are received. In Florida, officials told us there is typically a day or two before documents are logged into the system.
Even if Trump hands over his companies to a new trust, the plan fails to solve many of his bigger business conflicts, experts say. Terms of the trust that would insulate the president from the Trump Organization haven’t been made public. Trump’s decision not to divest his assets has also been heavily criticized by several former White House attorneys and ethics chiefs.
Watch Spicer’s answer below from CNN.