“He’s Setting Himself Up as a Shadow President”


Former White House Ethics Czar Richard Painter on why it matters that Donald Trump is reportedly using the presidential seal for the Saudi-backed LIV golf tour

I’ve been fascinated by the tensions caused by the emergence of the Saudi-backed LIV golf tour, a tournament currently being hosted at Bedminster, one of Donald Trump’s courses. This is partly because Trump’s long-standing feud with the PGA (who broke with him over January 6) is in my reporting wheelhouse, but also simply because I love playing the game of golf.

It’s occurred to me as I’ve read the reporting about the rifts between golfers such as Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, and Bryson DeChambeau—who have reportedly taken individual payments between $90 million and $200 million from LIV Golf (whose major shareholder is the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia)—and those who have stuck with the PGA that, if you’re not a golfer, you might not understand the full thorniness of this.

For the full explainer—and to understand why it matters that Trump is reportedly using the presidential seal—see “Vicky Ward Investigates.”