"It's incredibly broad language", said Frederick J. Tansill, a family estate and trust attorney outside Washington, D.C., who reviewed the documents for ProPublica. The trust set up "only the appearance of separation", a spokesman for the watchdog organization said.
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said on Monday he was uncertain if Mr. Trump had taken money from his trust and didn't answer a question about whether the president would make a disclosure if he did so.
The trust document states that the "trustees shall not provide any report to Donald J. Trump on the holdings and sources of income of the Trust". "A blind trust, or any kind of trust, rather, the whole entire point of setting it up is that somebody can withdraw money".
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According to a revised version of the trust released by the General Services Administration, "The Trustees shall distribute net income or principal to Donald J. Trump at his request, as the Trustees deem necessary for his maintenance, support or uninsured medical expenses, or as the Trustees otherwise deem appropriate". To Painter, now a professor at the University of Minnesota Law School, the only way to avoid conflicts is for the president to erect a blind trust, where his assets are completely segregated from his knowledge and control, with trustees having the power to sell them. "Accordingly Eric Trump, Donald Trump Jr. and Allen Weisselberg are the sole decision makers for the organization". I talk to him a lot. It did not include any restrictions on when Trump could get the money. "There have been no changes to the trust", said Amanda Miller, a spokeswoman for the business. That's because both the trust and Trump Organization are privately held.
The filing was revealed last week after the GSA, which oversees federal land, told the Trumps that the company is "in full compliance" with its lease for the Trump International Hotel, which is located in a federally owned building near the White House. "I just don't see it like that". However, in a March 24 interview with Forbes, Eric Trump, who is listed as an adviser to the trust, said that he would keep his father updated on the businesses, but only on "the bottom line, profitability reports, and stuff like that, but, you know, that's about it". They're going to find a way forward. "There's no blindness to this trust, and it's not subtle".