83x16: President and Vice President not Subject to 18 U.S.C. §§ 202-209

PDF Link to PDF 

Office of Government Ethics
83 x 16

Letter to a Deputy DAEO dated October 20, 1983

You have requested us to confirm our oral advice of October 18, 1983 regarding whether or not the conflict of interest laws (18 U.S.C. §§ 202-209) and the standards of conduct regulations (see 3 C.F.R. Part 100) would prohibit the President from taking part in official matters relating to the entertainment industry which may from time to time arise.

In brief, the Department of Justice's views, with which we agree, are that the President and the Vice President are not legally subject to the restrictions of (1) the conflict of interest laws, Title 18 U.S.C. §§ 202-209, and (2) the standards of conduct as set forth in Executive Order No. 11222 of May 8, 1965 and the regulations thereunder, 5 C.F.R Part 735 (pertaining to the whole executive branch) and 3 C.F.R. Part 100 (pertaining specifically to the Executive Office of the President), but as a matter of policy, the President and the Vice President should conduct themselves as if they were so bound. See, e.g., letter opinion from Laurence H. Silberman, Acting Attorney General, Department of Justice, to Senator Howard W. Cannon, Chairman, Committee on Rules and Administration, dated September 20, 1974, and [citation deleted].

[Final paragraph deleted.]


David H. Martin