Melania Trump reveals plan to leverage presidency to ink ‘multi-million dollar’ endorsement deals

Judd Legum

Judd Legum Editor in Chief, Think Progress

In a lawsuit filed today, First Lady Melania Trump revealed her intention to leverage the presidency to ink new “licensing, branding, and endorsement” deals worth many millions of dollars. In the filing, Melania Trump’s lawyer described the position of First Lady as a “once-in-a-lifetime” money making opportunity. She told the court she intended to pursue deals in “apparel, accessories, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics, hair care, skin care, and fragrance.”

These kind of endorsement deals would be especially lucrative while Melania Trump is First Lady and thus “one of the most photographed women in the world.”

 

Melania Trump v. Mail Media Inc, Supreme Court of The State of New York. Filed 2/6/17.

The First Lady’s lawsuit is against the Daily Mail, which published a story repeating allegations in a Slovenian magazine that Melania Trump once worked as an escort. The allegations were unsupported and the Daily Mail has since issued a retraction.

According to the lawsuit, because of the Daily Mail’s inaccurate reporting, these business opportunities will be less available to her while her husband is in the White House.

The strategy Melania Trump lays out in her lawsuit is similar to the one already being executed by President Trump.

Donald Trump maintains full ownership over his businesses and recently doubled the initiation fee for his private club in Florida, Mar-a-lago, from $100,000 to $200,000. He then spent last weekend at Mar-a-lago attending events with members. Trump is effectively using his position as president to make membership at Mar-a-lago more attractive and then monetizing the increased demand.

Trump is also taking advantage of the increased prominence of his brand and plans to triple the number of hotels with his name in the United States.

Despite calls from a bipartisan group of legal and ethical experts, Trump has refused to divest his myriad holdings. He claimed to have a plan to “separate” from his businesses but it was little more than smoke and mirrors.

Since Trump’s businesses receive a steady stream of payments from foreign governments, his continued ownership violates the Constitution.

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This was reposted from Think Progress.

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

The Big Drip

From the USW

From tumbledown bridges to decrepit roads and failing water systems, crumbling infrastructure undermines America’s safety and prosperity. In coming weeks, Union Matters will delve into this neglect and the urgent need for a rebuilding campaign that creates jobs, fuels economic growth and revitalizes communities. 

A rash of water main breaks in West Berkeley, Calif., and neighboring cities last month flooded streets and left at least 300 residents without water. Routine pressure adjustments in response to water demand likely caused more than a dozen pipes, some made of clay and more than 100 years old, to rupture.

West Berkeley’s brittle mains are not unique. Decades of neglect left aging pipes susceptible to breaks in communities across the U.S., wasting two trillion gallons of treated water each year as these systems near collapse.

Comprehensive upgrades to the nation’s crumbling water systems would stanch the flow and ensure all Americans have reliable access to clean water.

Nationwide, water main breaks increased 27 percent between 2012 and 2018, according to a Utah State University study.  

These breaks not only lead to service disruptions  but also flood out roads, topple trees and cause illness when drinking water becomes contaminated with bacteria.

The American Water Works Association estimated it will cost at least $1 trillion over the next 25 years to upgrade and expand water infrastructure.

Some local water utilities raised their rates to pay for system improvements, but that just hurts poor consumers who can’t pay the higher bills.

And while Congress allocates money for loans that utilities can use to fix portions of their deteriorating systems, that’s merely a drop in the bucket—a fraction of what agencies need for lasting improvements.

America can no longer afford a piecemeal approach to a systemic nationwide crisis. A major, sustained federal commitment to fixing aging pipes and treatment plants would create millions of construction-related jobs while ensuring all Americans have safe, affordable drinking water.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work