Although Donald Trump, as president, should be essentially looking out solely for the interests of the American people, such is not the case. Rather, he also maintains private business interests. Although he passed off executive control of his businesses to his two sons upon taking office, he — in conflict with protocol — maintains a financial stake in his businesses.
In that light, there’s some Trump-related news in the business world this week.
As Thursday dawned this past week, the Trump SoHo hotel finalized a decisive cut ties with the Trump Organization, becoming “The Dominick Hotel,” as International Business Times reports.
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The transition away from being affiliated with the Trump Organization on the part of the Manhattan hotel comes after business suffered tremendously at the hotel — as well as across the Trump Organization’s real estate empire — throughout the president’s first year in office. Such has been prompted in large part by the president’s incendiary behavior while in office. Who wants to part with significant sums of money to stay somewhere branded with the name of someone who has made his wildly reality-disconnected hatred of Muslims and other minorities clear?
Local news outlet KITV reports that Nicole Murano, the hotel’s director of marketing and communications, has indicated that the transition away from being affiliated with the Trump Organization will be “seamless.” She says that all hotel reservations will be honored and there will be no staff changes.
KITV notes that the Trump Organization announced in November that it would be severing ties with CIM Group, the entity that owns the hotel building, by the end of the year. CIM Group took over control of the building in 2014, after the hotel had struggled for years to actually prove successful. The Trump Organization stayed on to manage the facility, but that contract is now no more.
Murano says that the hotel will now be managed by “an affiliate of CIM Group,” besides also being “a part of Preferred Hotels & Resort’s Legend collection.”
Besides the issues with the hotel being associated with Trump’s name, the Trump SoHo also attracted scrutiny because of the fact that the convicted money launderer Felix Sater helped procure the initial deal that allowed the hotel to be branded with Trump’s name.
Trump’s business empire has attracted intense scrutiny during his rise to power because of the potential for it to make conflicts of interest weigh on his decision-making.
For instance, Trump’s D.C. hotel, which has attracted scrutiny over the fact that, besides the conflict of interest problem, the building’s lease forbids government officials from signing, is doing remarkably well, The Washington Post reports.
That boost in profits, however, is not just from the natural functioning of the market. Rather, it’s from interests either on the president’s good side or wanting to get on it paying high rates to use the facilities.
There’s an obviously apparent problem there, but Trump refuses to address it and — like on so many other issues — insists that he is in the right.
His two adult sons, Eric and Donald Jr., announced plans for a new line of Trump hotels catering to people of a more moderate income than those catered to by the president’s other properties, but those plans haven’t culminated in anything yet.
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