The federal government must ban the Trump Organization from government contracts and programs following its conviction on several counts of criminal tax fraud and falsifying business records, according to a letter sent today by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the Project on Government Oversight and government contracts expert Professor Steven L. Schooner to multiple government agencies.

CREW, POGO and Schooner previously urged the government in October 2021 to stop doing business with the Trump Organization while the company was under indictment. The government failed to do so. Since then, the Trump Organization has been found guilty of 17 counts of fraud, and the company’s former Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg pled guilty to 15 felony counts, including several counts of tax fraud and falsifying business records. 

The General Services Administration, Department of Homeland Security, Army, and Department of Veterans Affairs have a history of doing business with the  company. Government regulations state that any “conviction” for “[c]ommission of … falsification or destruction of records, … tax evasion,” or “violating Federal criminal tax laws” is cause for debarment. Despite being found guilty on multiple counts of these crimes, a ban on contracting with the Trump Organization has not even been proposed, as far as the public is aware. 

“The Trump Organization’s felony convictions should have resulted in an immediate ban from federal business,” said CREW President Noah Bookbinder. “The regulations outlining grounds for a ban on contracts are meant to protect the government from criminal companies’ abuses. The government’s continued business with the Trump Organization is as inexplicable as it is indefensible.”

In addition to the Trump Organization’s criminal convictions, a New York Supreme Court Justice appointed an independent monitor last month to oversee the company’s financial disclosures and transactions, saying it was likely that the Trump Organization and its senior officers are currently engaging in fraudulent activity. Donald Trump has also long leveraged his company’s contracts with the government to enrich himself.

“It’s hard to imagine a better candidate for debarment from federal contracts than the Trump Organization,” said Bookbinder. “The officials entrusted with protecting taxpayer funds from fraud, waste, and abuse by contractors lacking business integrity and honesty must abide by the law and ensure that the government immediately stops doing business with the Trump Organization.”

Header photo by James McNellis via a Creative Commons license.

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