Grifter-elect talks up business partner in call with Turkish president
It’s clear that Trump will use the presidency to advance his business interests. Josh Marshall writes:
During his November 9th congratulatory call with Turkish President Erdogan, Donald Trump talked up his Turkish business partner who now seems primed to be a key intermediary between the two heads of state. This new revelation follows the pattern I mentioned a couple days ago: we’re only finding out about this because it bubbled up in the pres of the country in question. That’s how we learned about Trump’s transition meeting with his Indian business partners, his alleged discussion of building permits with the President of Argentina, the UK wind farms and Nigel Farage.
On the one hand, this is pretty embarrassing for the US political press. But I’m not sure how much we should hold the reporters covering the transition at fault. I don’t say this to excuse anyone. It’s pretty embarrassing both for the press and for us as Americans that we have to learn about the incoming President’s incorrigible grifting from foreign papers. But we are in somewhat uncharted territory in terms of the complete opaqueness of this campaign, transition and soon-to-be-presidency. Much of what we know and uncover about recent presidents is due to the starting point of fairly extensive disclosure driven by a mixture of norms and laws. If you just disclose nothing, things get much harder to find out. That’s also the case if you deal exclusively with loyalists, often loyalists reinforced by punitive non-disclosure agreements.