GUEST: Rachel Curley, democracy associate with Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division
BACKGROUND: Walter Shaub, the head of the Office of Government Ethics has resigned after months of wrangling with the Trump administration. Shaub said he had not been pressured to step down about 6 months before his term was set to expire. In his resignation letter to President Trump, he wrote, "public service is a public trust, requiring employees to place loyalty to the Constitution, the laws and ethical principles above private gain."
The resignation of a federal official would ordinarily not invoke much attention. But, as the New York Times put it, the news is significant in, "Mr. Trump’s Washington, where the vast holdings of the president and his cabinet, as well as an influx of advisers from businesses and lobbying firms, have raised a rash of accusations of conflicts of interest."
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