Donald Trump’s sprawling business ties raise questions about how his personal interests could influence the policies he pursues as president. His financial interests at home and abroad, family businesses, outstanding debts and ongoing government action against him and his companies complicated the transition and could be a recurring problem for his presidency. Trump has stepped down from his positions at the Trump Organization, but he hasn’t divestedhis ownership and can draw funds from a trust established to hold the companies whenever he likes. The organization, now managed by his sons Eric and Don Jr. and Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg, terminated pending deals and said it won't seek new international business. Walter Shaub, director of the Office of Government Ethics, disagrees with the Trump team’s lawyers that these measures solve the problems his businesses present, calling them “meaningless.” The Trump Organization declined to comment about its investments or potential conflicts. Here’s what we know about Trump’s interests around the world.
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Trump has earned millions of dollars plastering his name on hotels and condominium towers built or owned by international partners, some in countries that are political flashpoints. Domestic operations and those overseas, which often have ties to foreign governments, could run afoul of the Constitution's emoluments clause, which bans gifts to U.S. officials from governments. Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a public watchdog group, has sued the president for violating the emoluments clause over payments by diplomats and foreign government officials to Trump’s hotels and golf courses. New plaintiffs from the restaurant and hotels industry were added to the lawsuit in April, alleging that Trump is unfairly depriving them of business from foreign governments trying to curry favor with the president. Meanwhile, Trump Hotels plans to triple its number of U.S. hotels, which could cause more businesses to feel the pinch of competing with the White House.