Warren, Dems accuse Trump of ethics violations

Warren, Dems accuse Trump of ethics violations
A group of six Senate Democrats led by Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenJudd Gregg: The self-marginalizing minority Dem 2020 hopefuls lead pack in opposing Trump Cabinet picks Brazile: DNC staffers got death threats after email hack MORE (Mass.) is ramping up pressure on the Trump administration over alleged ethics violations.
 
The senators on Friday sent a letter to White House counsel Don McGahn urging him to "prevent further violations of government ethics laws by members of the White House and the administration."
 
They specifically said President Trump’s counselor Kellyanne Conway may have violated "ethics laws and regulations.”
 
Conway gave a cable news interview from the White House briefing room this week in which she urged viewers to buy Ivanka Trump's signature line of merchandise.
 
"Go buy Ivanka's stuff," she told the Fox News audience. "I'm going to give it a free commercial here."
 
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The letter’s other signatories are Democratic Sens. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseFive takeaways from the Scott Pruitt emails A guide to the committees: Senate Pruitt confirmation sets stage for Trump EPA assault MORE (R.I.), Tom UdallTom UdallDem senator: Confirm Gorsuch, Garland simultaneously Dem 2020 hopefuls lead pack in opposing Trump Cabinet picks A guide to the committees: Senate MORE (N.M.), Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyDems rip Trump administration for revoking Obama's transgender directive A guide to the committees: Senate GOP sets sights on internet privacy rules MORE (Mass.), Tom CarperTom CarperA guide to the committees: Senate Senate advances Trump's Commerce pick Warren: Trump's EPA pick the 'attorney general for Exxon' MORE (Del.) and Tammy Duckworth (Ill.).
 
The lawmakers cite an Office of Government Ethics rule that states a federal employee "may not use his public office for his own private gain or for that of persons or organizations with which he is associated personally."
 
They also highlighted other possible ethical improprieties since Trump took office Jan. 20.
 
Critics have raised questions whether the Trump International Hotel in Washington violated its lease with the General Services Administration, which has drawn the interest of House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason ChaffetzJason ChaffetzThis week: Trump makes first address to Congress Trump's first dinner out in DC: His own hotel DC residents back Utah rep's primary challenger MORE (R-Utah).
 
Democrats are also pointing to the decision to substantially increase membership fees at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in West Palm Beach, Fla., which Trump and other top officials have called "the Winter White House,” shortly after his inauguration.
 
Another area of concern, Democrats say, is the Defense Department's rental of space in Trump Tower, with proceeds going to the Trump Organization.
 
The pattern of behavior "suggests that ethics violations will continue to plague this Administration throughout the length of its tenure,” the senators wrote.
 
They are calling on the White House counsel to make public any guidance provided to White House staff to prevent ethical violations.
 
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.