A federal agency has concluded that President-elect Donald Trump will be in violation of his Washington, D.C., hotel lease when he's sworn in on Inauguration Day unless he divests all financial interests, according to multiple House Democrats.
In a letter Wednesday to General Services Administration Commissioner Denise Roth, four Democratic lawmakers said they seek the GSA's plans on how to "address the imminent breach-of-lease and conflict-of-interest issues" with the Trump International Hotel — which sits on federal lands.
"[T]he Deputy Commissioner informed our staff that GSA assesses that Mr. Trump will be in breach of the lease agreement the moment he takes office on January 20, 2017, unless he fully divests himself of all financial interests in the lease for the Washington, D.C. hotel," Reps. Elijah Cummings (Md.), Peter DeFazio (Ore.), Gerald Connolly (Va.) and André Carson (Ind.) wrote in the letter.
"The Deputy Commissioner made clear that Mr. Trump must divest himself not only of managerial control, but of all ownership interest as well," the four said.
The lawmakers also requested seven contractural and financial documents pertaining to the hotel's lease.
"The Deputy Commissioner was very helpful in explaining the current status of the lease agreement and GSA's interpretation of its provisions, but his briefing raised a host of concerns about serious conflicts of interest that already exist and may become even more exacerbated going forward," the four lawmakers said.
Trump International Hotel, the site of the what was once the Old Post Office Pavilion, opened its doors in October. The GSA has a 60-year lease agreement with the Trump Organization.
According to documents provided to Buzzfeed, Trump gave his three children — Eric, Donald Jr. and Ivanka — more than 22 percent of the hotel project. Apparently, none of them invested any of their own money into the project, however.
Trump was expected to give a major news conference Thursday on how he will handle his businesses while president, but his team announced earlier this week that the announcement is postponed. He reportedly asked for more time in order to continue filling out his Cabinet.
The president-elect did tweet late Monday night that he would be leaving his businesses by the time he takes office in mid-January.
Even though I am not mandated by law to do so, I will be leaving my busineses before January 20th so that I can focus full time on the......— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1481603173.0
Presidency. Two of my children, Don and Eric, plus executives, will manage them. No new deals will be done during my term(s) in office.— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1481603521.0
I will hold a press conference in the near future to discuss the business, Cabinet picks and all other topics of interest. Busy times!— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1481604093.0