During a ten-minute speech delivered to 800 guests at his New Year’s Eve party in Florida, Donald Trump called the press “garbage,” said the “beautiful” generals he’s met with “make Tom Cruise look like dirt,” and repeatedly praised a Dubai-based business partner, according to CNN.
Hussain Sajwani, whose company built Trump International Course Dubai, was at the party with his family, whom Trump called the “the most beautiful people.” The billionaire’s company, DAMAC Properties, is set to open a Tiger Woods–designed golf course with the Trump Organization in 2018.
Trump’s reference to Sajwani illustrates, once again, his difficulty separating his political life from his business. The president-elect, who won’t divest from his company, has suggested that he’ll insulate himself from conflicts of interest by having his sons run the Trump Organization and not creating “new deals.” That promise makes little sense.
Sajwani, for one, doesn’t even believe it. The developer told NBC News that Trump’s election is “good news” for his company, which he expects to “benefit from the strength of the brand going forward.” He said that he expects to work with Trump’s sons to expand and grow his company’s relationship with the Trump Organization.
If that raises red flags, Sajwani says it shouldn’t. “I am not involved in any political issues or positions,” he told NBC News.
But not everyone is so sanguine. Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project for Government Oversight, told NBC that Trump’s clearly going to be a president with divided loyalties. “He’s now going to be pursuing U.S. foreign policy, with an eye to the fact that it may be impacting his family’s financial interests,” she said. “And this is not only a case of what we perceive. It’s going to be what the rest of the world is perceiving.”