With questions swirling around potential conflicts of interest for lobbyists and family members on Donald Trump’s transition team, ethics experts say it’s crucial that the team building the new administration have a formal code of principles. But here’s a little understood fact about presidential transitions: They don’t have to follow a code of ethics unless they want to, and even if they do, they come up with the terms themselves. In a break with tradition, the campaign — so far — has not produced one.
“They should not be selecting regulators who will then regulate their companies,” said Trevor Potter, an election-law lawyer who advised Republican Sen. John McCain on his 2008 presidential bid and a Member at Caplin & Drysdale. An ethics policy could, for example, require these lobbyists to recuse themselves from recommending appointees who would govern their industries, he said.
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Excerpt taken from the article “Trump Gets To Decide If His Transition Team Will Have A Code Of Ethics” by Lisa Rein and Elise Viebeck for The Washington Post.