President Donald Trump’s nominees for the first Cabinet position to be confirmed by the Senate this week have been accused of having conflicts of interests.
The list of potential nominees includes a wide array of Wall Street and private equity investors and investors in real estate.
The Wall Street Journal and CNBC’s John Harwood published the list of Trump’s potential Cabinet picks Thursday morning.
It included two members of the White House economic advisory team, Steven Mnuchin and Gary Cohn.
Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs executive, was nominated to be Treasury Secretary by Trump in January.
Trump has said he is a fan of the investment firm and the two have been close friends.
Cohn, a veteran of the Clinton administration and former chief White House strategist, is the Trump administration’s top economic adviser.
Cohn has a long history of political work.
In addition to his time working for the Democratic National Committee, Cohn is the co-founder of the lobbying firm Global Energy Capital.
The Senate Finance Committee announced Mnuchin’s nomination Friday.
In an interview with The Associated Press in January, Cohn said that the two worked closely on Trump’s economic policies, including the $1 trillion infrastructure plan.
“I think we worked very closely on many issues, from infrastructure, to jobs, to trade,” Cohn said.
“We had many meetings, many conversations.
And I think he’s going to take the opportunity to have the most substantive conversations about all of those.”
Cohn has long been an opponent of President Donald J. Trump’s agenda, having served as the finance chairman of Trump 2016’s presidential campaign.
The Treasury Department’s portfolio includes some of the biggest banks in the country.
Mnuchins ties to the bank run deep.
He was CEO of Goldman Sachs from 2010 until 2017.
He has also been a financial advisor to the president of Argentina, the country’s foreign minister, and the head of the New York-based Bank of New York Mellon.
Cohn is also the founder and chairman of the Carlyle Group, a private equity firm.
That firm has also advocated for tax cuts for the wealthy.
Cohn was a board member of Goldman’s parent company, CIT Group, from 2013 to 2019.
The bank has faced criticism from Democrats and Republicans over its treatment of investors.
Goldman Sachs paid $2.7 billion to settle allegations that it used proprietary trading strategies to lower its price for mortgage-backed securities.
It was fined $2 billion for a separate probe that included allegations of the bank using proprietary trading techniques to manipulate the prices of certain commodities, such as oil and gold.
The firm also agreed to pay $7 billion in penalties for its role in manipulating the London interbank offered rate, the benchmark interest rate for trillions of dollars of global securities.
Goldman said in a statement that it was disappointed with the Senate Committee’s vote.
“It is the first time that any member of Congress has sought to scrutinize or hold the bank accountable for its conduct,” the statement read.
“Goldman Sachs is committed to maintaining the independence and integrity of our investment practices and is confident that our Board and our management team will work collaboratively to achieve these goals.”
In an email, a CIT spokesperson said, “Goldberg Sachs remains committed to working with the Government to create a fairer, more just financial system and that’s why we are committed to cooperating fully with the Committee and the Committee staff to ensure that the facts of this matter are appropriately examined and investigated.”
The Treasury has not released the names of the members of Trump`s Cabinet.
In the past, Treasury Department appointees have not been required to disclose their investments.
But Trump has pledged to disclose his financial holdings.
Trump appointed Mnuchin as the chairman of his National Economic Council in February, and Mnuchin has previously made donations to Democrats.
A number of former Treasury secretaries have made campaign contributions to Republicans, including former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, and former Treasury Undersecretary Robert Zoellick.
Trump also nominated Steven Rattner, the CEO of the hedge fund Blackstone, to lead the Treasury Department.
Rattner also served as a senior adviser for Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign and had previously made campaign donations to Republicans.
He is the son of former President Richard Nixon, and his father was the chairman and CEO of Blackstone.
“He’s got a history of doing really bad things, like he’s done in real life,” former Treasury official Robert Einhorn told the AP.
“His father had some really big conflicts of a kind that are now really public.”
Blackstone declined to comment on its donations to Republican candidates, but its CEO said he will not donate to the Trump campaign.
Blackstone has donated more than $8 million to Republicans since Trump won the election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
In 2015, Blackstone donated $1 million to Trump and the Republican National Committee.