Donald Trump using taxpayer-funded Twitter accounts to promote daughter Ivanka's business interests


Click to follow
The Independent Tech

Donald Trump is using his official and taxpayer-funded White House account to promote his daughter's business interests.

The billionaire businessman posted in defence of his daughter, criticising department store chain Nordstrom for dropping a deal with Ivanka Trump. And he then promoted that fierce criticism with a retweet from his @POTUS account – a profile intended for Presidential business and which is associated with his office.

"My daughter Ivanka has ben treated so unfairly by Nordstrom," he wrote, tagging the company in the tweet. "She is a great person – always pushing me to do the right thing!

"Terrible!" he wrote in the post that has since been shared thousands of times.

He then shared that post, which was originally written on his @realDonaldTrump handle, from his @POTUS account. The account is controlled by his team and tweets from it are generally sent by Dan Scavino, Mr Trump's assistant and director of social media.

The official account has 15 million followers, fewer than the 24 million that follow Mr Trump's personal account. But many of those followers are associated with the office, and were inherited when Barack Obama's team passed the account over to his predecessor.

Nordstrom didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Shares in the Seattle-based chain traded around $42.70 before the president's 10:50 a.m. tweet, then fell to $42.48 afterward in a flurry of trading. The shares recovered to around $42.80 by midday. 

A social media campaign called "Grab Your Wallet" has urged a boycott of stores that stock Ivanka Trump or Donald Trump products. 

Ivanka Trump has said she would take a leave of absence from her clothing and accessories business as well as the Trump organization. Rosemary K. Young, senior director of marketing at Ivanka Trump, said last week that the brand is expanding and saw "significant" revenue growth last year compared to the previous year. 

It's not the first time Trump's tweets have at least temporarily affected a stock. US automakers Boeing and Carrier have also suffered after his comments on Twitter.