A new form of corruption: Professors Smith & Thorpe address Trumpʼs Nordstrom Tweets on KUOW

KUOW interviewed UW Political Science Professors Mark A. Smith and Rebecca Thorpe about President Trump’s Twitter attack on the Seattle-based retailer Nordstrom. In their interviews with KUOW’s John Ryan and Kim Malcolm, Smith and Thorpe addressed this potential abuse of power. Smith “called it the definition of nepotism and corruption of the highest order” noting that “this is something that’s totally new for our country”:

“This is the way politics works in a lot of countries. People fight for political office; they then use it to benefit themselves and their family members. There's a real danger here of politics driving business decisions in a way that benefits Trump's pocket. When you have a political system where the way you make money is to curry political favor, that's horrible for the economy.”

Professor Thorpe pointed out that “it’s going to be up to Congress to make a determination as to when the president has crossed the line.” With a Republican-controlled Congress, “that's unlikely unless the president becomes extremely unpopular,” she added.

The article titled “Are Trump’s tweets about Nordstrom an abuse of power?” along with the corresponding audio clips was published on the KUOW website on February 8, 2017.