Episode 5: President Trump's Conflicts of Interest

February 8th 2017

ATTN: Staff

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How will President Donald Trump's conflicts of interests impact his time in office? This week on ATTN:'s "Got Your Attention" podcast we dive into the history of impeachment.

A recent Time Magazine op-ed calls for Trump to be impeached due to the emoluments clause, which had us wondering "what does it actually take to impeach a president?" ATTN: Staff Writer Mike Rothschild broke down how many times impeachment has been used against U.S. government officials:

"Due to its complexity and potential to go wrong, impeachment has been used just 19 times: presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton, one senator, one Cabinet secretary and 15 judges have been impeached by the House, with only eight people ever removed from office. President Richard Nixon had impeachment articles against him approved by the House Judiciary Committee, but he resigned before the full House took up the matter."

We also take a look at whether or not conflicts of interest will bother Trump voters. Trump's potential conflicts of interest — given his vast business dealings and new government position — have been well documented. (The New York Times has these helpful infographics.) Even though he turned the business over to his sons, Trump has said he will not liquidate his assets.

And while election-season polling found that Trump voters consider corruption to be a major issue, the New Yorker's James Surowiecki makes the case that Trump's supporters won't care too much about the issue — as long as he delivers on campaign promises.

And don't worry, we didn't forget the fun stuff. Staff Writer (and Patriots fan) Danielle DeCourcey, Senior Social Trends Editor Omri Rolan, Senior Editor Sarah Gray, and Head of Editorial Mike Vainisi settle once and for all if you should have felt conflicted over rooting for the New England Patriots, and they are shocked over a story of a man, who paid $80,000 to look like this celebrity. (You'll never guess who.)


A photo posted by Bryan Ray (@beeray416) on

Podcast notes:

Links to stories we did (and didn't) talk about this week on "Got Your Attention" — because you know you want to learn more.

  • In the New Yorker, James Suroweiecki makes a compelling case for why Trump supporters don’t care about his conflicts of interest.
  • Here's the border wall commercial that was deemed too inappropriate to air at the Super Bowl.
  • A UCLA study found that people with socially conservative views are more likely to believe fake news about threats.
  • This man is in all the gossip sites for spending a whopping $80,000 to look like this pop star.
  • Jamie Lynn Spear's daughter was in a terrible ATV accident. ATVs are a safety risk for kids.
  • Can conflicted Patriots fans feel better with charity and does that even make sense? Josh Gondelman, a writer and comedian, started a campaign for "conflicted" Patriot's fans.
  • The overall story isn't new, but it shows what happens when a country cuts off immigration. Japan's population shrank by 1 million in 5 years.
  • Beyoncé is having Twins. Why does it seem like celebrities are always having twins or triplets? ATTN: explains.
  • ATTN: spoke with Mark Potok from the Southern Poverty Law Center about a report that white supremacists are "active" in law enforcement. He said that extremist organizations are probably not rampant in law enforcement. However, unorganized followers of extremist ideas are a cause for concern.
  • Annette Bening will play former Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco in the second season of "American Crime Story," which will tell the story of Hurricane Katrina and be called "Katrina: American Crime Story."
  • Time Magazine published an op-ed titled “Why We're Calling for Congress to Impeach Donald Trump." The article — written by a retired justice from the Montana Supreme Court along with the co-founder of Free Speech for People — focuses on the emoluments clause. At ATTN: writer Mike Rothschild looked into what it actually takes to impeach a president.

What is the "Got Your Attention" podcast?

If you've ever wondered how the staff pitch and select the stories that you read or watch at ATTN:, we're giving you an inside listen. ATTN: Media is excited to announce "Got Your Attention," a podcast where ATTN: staffers compete to have their pitches accepted by our host — while also unpacking some of the week's most important headlines.

The game is simple: Three ATTN: staff members — Senior Social Trends Editor Omri Rolan, Staff Writer Danielle DeCourcey, and Senior Editor Sarah Gray — pitch their best stories to our host and Head of Editorial Mike Vainisi. If Mike picks their story, they get a point, and the four discuss the story.