The White House told a government watchdog agency that Kellyanne Conway, a senior aide to President Donald Trump, acted “inadvertently” when she publicly endorsed the clothing and jewelry line of Trump’s daughter, Ivanka.
Conway came under criticism for urging Americans to “go buy Ivanka’s stuff,” in comments that appeared to violate government ethics rules prohibiting the use of public office to endorse products or advance personal business gains.
White House Deputy Counsel Stefan Passantino said Conway committed to follow the rules in the future. Passantino apparently did not suggest any disciplinary action.
“We concluded that Ms. Conway acted inadvertently and is highly unlikely to do so again,” Passantino said in the letter to Office of Government Ethics Director Walter Shaub. “(She) did so without nefarious motive or intent to benefit personally,” the letter said.
Conway spoke about Ivanka Trump’s products after department store chain Nordstrom Inc said it was dropping the brand of the president’s older daughter.
A day before her appearance on television, Trump complained on Twitter that Nordstrom had treated his daughter unfairly by dropping her line.
Norman Eisen, a former ethics adviser to President Barack Obama, said he would have preferred a tougher response.