Today, WNYC and ProPublica announced a new partnership and reporting project. “Trump, Inc.,” a 12-episode podcast series, will dig deeply into the central questions surrounding the business dealings of President Donald Trump and his family, including how his role as President may be working to his financial benefit.
A year after his election, basic yet vital questions about President Trump and his family’s business empire remain unanswered: Who are their partners? Is the business benefiting from its close relationship with the Trump administration? What deals are happening? Who’s financing them? And most fundamentally — is Trump acting on behalf of his country, or his company?
“Trump, Inc.”’s debut episode — available today — starts at the very beginning: the January 11, 2017 press conference when Trump announced how he would handle potential conflicts of interest as both President and the owner of the Trump Organization. With stacks of folders next to him, Trump said he would forgo the tradition of divesting from his business, and instead shift his assets into a trust controlled by sons Eric and Donald Jr. What’s happened in the year since?
Upcoming episodes will include:
- The record fines a Trump casino received around money laundering;
- Stories on the company’s foreign deals and financing;
- A look into the Russian money trail; and much more.
The podcast will feature investigative reporting by WNYC and ProPublica journalists including Andrea Bernstein, Jesse Eisinger, Ilya Marritz, Eric Umansky, and Heather Vogell, and conversations with leading investigative and business reporters across the country. It will be an “open investigation” that starts with questions and not answers, inviting everyone, including listeners, to help peel back the mysteries.
“Trump, Inc.” builds upon ProPublica and WNYC’s previous collaboration, which — along with The New Yorker — broke the story of how Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. avoided criminal indictment for allegedly lying to potential buyers of units in the Trump SoHo hotel and condominium. In addition, earlier in the year, WNYC ran an exclusive investigative report that uncovered Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s troubling real estate dealings. ProPublica also reported that, while the President’s business is being managed by other people, he can still withdraw money from his company at any time without disclosing it.
“This is an unprecedented moment in so many ways. We have a president whose pre-White House career was as a rogue businessman — right here in our backyard,” said Jim Schachter, Vice President for News, WNYC. “By partnering with ProPublica, we hope to bring the nation’s best investigative reporters together to maintain an intense focus on the facts about the Trump family’s continuing business endeavors and the standards of ethical conduct that form an important basis of the American system of government.”
“In addition to marshalling journalistic resources across news organizations, we are also excited to meet the challenge of holding the Trump Organization accountable with the help of listeners,” said Eric Umansky, Deputy Managing Editor of ProPublica. “Documenting what is actually happening takes a lot of digging and a lot of work, especially when the Trump Organization and the White House fails to fill in facts. That’s why we’re pulling everybody in to do it together.”
“Trump, Inc.” debuts today and is available at trumpincpodcast.org, Apple Podcasts, and all other places where podcasts may be downloaded. The series will release new episodes each Wednesday through April.
ABOUT PROPUBLICA ProPublica is an independent, nonprofit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. With a team of more than 75 dedicated journalists, ProPublica covers a range of topics, focusing on stories with the potential to spur real-world impact. Its reporting has contributed to the passage of new laws; reversals of harmful policies and practices; and accountability for leaders at local, state and national levels. Since it began publishing in 2008, ProPublica has received four Pulitzer Prizes, three Peabody Awards, two Emmy Awards and five George Polk Awards, among others.
ABOUT WNYC STUDIOS WNYC Studios is the premier producer of on-demand and broadcast audio, home to some of the most critically acclaimed and popular podcasts of the last decade, including Radiolab, 2 Dope Queens, Nancy, The New Yorker Radio Hour, Freakonomics Radio, Death, Sex & Money, Here’s the Thing with Alec Baldwin, Note To Self, On the Media, and A Piece of Work with Abbi Jacobson. WNYC Studios is leading the new golden age in audio with podcasts and national radio programs that inform, inspire, and delight millions of intellectually curious and highly engaged listeners across digital, mobile, and broadcast platforms. Their programs include personal narratives, deep journalism, interviews that reveal, and smart entertainment as varied and intimate as the human voice itself.