Money and Democracy

Published — January 20, 2017 Updated — February 1, 2017 at 10:46 am ET

Trump’s nominees face ethics, divestment challenges

A cabinet conflicted in myriad ways


Jan. 23, 2017: This story has been updated.

A president-elect’s Cabinet choices provide an early and often-illuminating marker of where the new administration is headed in both tone and policy. The confirmation process is an enduring slice of Washington Kabuki theater, complete with contentious hearings and the thrust-and-parry of politicians scurrying to make their partisan points.

But even by the usual standards, Donald Trump’s Cabinet-level selections and their hearings are displaying a stunning level of drama. Trump famously vowed to “drain the swamp” in the nation’s capital, and believes his choices are no-nonsense achievers unencumbered by political correctness. But many of those choices are facing sharp questions from Democrats about alleged conflicts-of-interest and ethical dilemmas. The Senate’s top Democrat, Charles Schumer of New York, calls the group a “swamp Cabinet.”

Each nominee is profiled below. The Center for Public Integrity has collected all available federal financial disclosures for the nominees, including ethics agreements and questionnaires submitted to Senate committees for many. Documentation was not yet available for several.

To find disclosures about a particular business or topic, type search terms in the box (for example, “Goldman”) and hit return. Or, scroll down to read the profiles and click on the disclosure links below.

(Update, Jan. 20, 2017: Since publication, Gens. Mattis and Kelly were confirmed by the U.S. Senate. The story has been updated to reflect this. Disclosure documents for DeVos were added.)

(Update, Jan. 23, 2017: Disclosure documents for Mattis, Shulkin, McMahon and Haley were added.)

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