One day after swearing he didn’t have any conflicts of interests, Trump tweeted proof of how completely enmeshed in business relationships he really is.
Early on Thursday, the incoming president ran what appeared to be an ad to drum up business for L.L. Bean, an outdoorwear retail company.
Thank you to Linda Bean of L.L.Bean for your great support and courage. People will support you even more now. Buy L.L.Bean. @LBPerfectMaine
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2017
The tweet appears to be in response to one of the company’s co-owners (and the granddaughter of founder L.L. Bean) Linda Bean coming under fire for giving one of his super PAC’s $60,000 (which may have been a campaign violation for being over the legal contribution limit).
As you may recall, Donald Trump is about to become the President of the United States. He has 19.6 million followers on Twitter. Every single statement he makes is covered around the world. And he just used that platform to tell people to buy hiking boots from the company whose owner gave him tens of thousands of dollars. Even by despot standards, that’s a pretty blatant abuse of power.
Meanwhile, L.L. Bean appears to be suffering from a backlash for supporting Trump in the first place. The head of L.L. Bean went as far as to denounce Linda Bean for involving the company in Trump’s sordid campaign.
Bean Chairman Shawn Gorman said he’s ‘‘deeply troubled by the portrayal of L.L. Bean as a supporter of any political agenda.’’ He said there are nine other board members and 50 family owners and that Linda Bean’s donation shouldn’t speak for all of them.
Trump’s comment will likely only pour gasoline on this raging fire.
Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images