Steven Mnuchin testifies during his Senate Finance Committee confirmation hearing in Dirksen Building, January 19, 2017.
Photograph by Tom Williams — CQ-Roll Call,Inc.
By Tessa Berenson
March 31, 2017

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he did not mean to promote The Lego Batman Movie when he told people to go see it during a recent appearance.

In a letter sent to the Office of Government Ethics and obtained by NBC, Mnuchin said he “should not have made that statement” and that “it was not my intention to make a product endorsement.”

The ethics concerns stem from an interview Mnuchin gave during an appearance at an event for the website Axios, in which he was asked for his favorite movie. He said, “I’m not allowed to promote anything that I’m involved in. So I just want to have the legal disclosure, you’ve asked me the question, and I am not promoting any product,” adding, “But you should send all your kids to Lego Batman.”

RatPac-Dune Entertainment Holdings, which Mnuchin co-founded, produced the movie. Mnuchin had agreed to divest his interests from RatPac-Dune within 120 days of his Treasury Secretary confirmation.

Ron Wyden, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, asked the Office of Government Ethics this week to review Mnuchin’s comments.

“I take very seriously my ethical responsibilities,” Mnuchin’s letter said. “I will exercise greater caution to avoid any suggestion that I do not take these important rules seriously.”

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