At Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate, Donald Trump was asked what would become of his business interests if he were elected president.
His answer: He’d give it up, passing control to his children – he gestured towards Ivanka, Eric and Donald Trump Jr. in the audience – and his top executives.
The position is a more or less standard one for politicians campaigning for national office. Back in 2012, Mitt Romney promised, if elected, to transfer his assets into a blind trust managed by the federal government.
Still, Trump isn’t your usual politician. The developer and TV star has leaned heavily on his experience as a businessman over the course of his campaign.
So his statement that his company would be “peanuts” if he were elected president managed to turn a few heads.
Here’s the full exchange with Fox Business’ Maria Bartiromo:
BARTIROMO: Mr. Trump, your net worth is in the multi-billions of dollars and have an ongoing thriving hotel and real estate business. Are you planning on putting your assets in a blind trust should you become president? With such vast wealth, how difficult will it be for you to disentangle yourself from your business and your money and prioritize America’s interest first?
TRUMP: Well, it’s an interesting question because I’m very proud of my company. As you too know, I know I built a very great company. But if I become president, I couldn’t care less about my company. It’s peanuts.
I want to use that same up here [points to his head], whatever it may be to make America rich again and to make America great again. I have Ivanka, and Eric and Don sitting there. Run the company kids, have a good time. I’m going to do it for America.
BARTIROMO: So you’ll put your assets in a blind trust?
TRUMP: I would put it in a blind trust. Well, I don’t know if it’s a blind trust if Ivanka, Don and Eric run it. If that’s a blind trust, I don’t know. But I would probably have my children run it with my executives and I wouldn’t ever be involved because I wouldn’t care about anything but our country, anything.