Could Nordstrom Sue Trump for His Angry Ivanka Tweet?

A top ethics lawyer says the company should.

John Locher/AP

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On Wednesday morning, President Donald Trump fired off a tweet attacking Nordstrom, saying that the department store has treated his eldest daughter, Ivanka, “so unfairly.” The tweet came just days after Nordstrom announced it would no longer sell Ivanka Trump’s clothing and accessories line; the company said the brand had performance problems, but the move came in the wake of a social-media campaign calling for a boycott of businesses selling Trump-branded wares. Shortly after Trump sent out the tweet from his personal account, it was retweeted by the official account for the president of the United States.

Trump’s attack on Nordstrom is just the latest example highlighting the many conflicts of interest that tie together his business interests and the presidency. Trump has singled out companies before (he tweeted about the cost of Air Force One, manufactured by Boeing, which then saw its stock fall), but this time he set his sights on a business directly affecting his daughter’s own. “Knowing that he’s doing it just for his family’s business interest is disturbing,” says Jordan Libowitz, a spokesman for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. “The real question to ask,” he adds, “is how does it benefit Kushner?” While Ivanka Trump does not have an official role in the White House, her husband, Jared Kushner, is a top adviser to the president.

Norm Eisen, who is the chair of CREW’s board and a former White House ethics lawyer, stated that Trump’s tweet is grounds for a lawsuit.

Ethics lawyers have repeatedly called Trump’s attempt at separating himself from his businesses before taking office insufficient. In January, CREW filed a lawsuit against Trump for violating the Constitution on the grounds that he is receiving payments from foreign governments.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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