As we reported, our new (illegitimate) POTUS was in violation of the Constitution on day one because of the Emoluments Clause. Now this lawyers have wasted no time and plan to sue Trump in federal court today over business interests they say put him in violation by receiving payments from foreign governments.
The nonprofit good-government group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, or CREW, will file the suit Monday morning in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, the organization said. It alleges that Trump violated the Constitution the moment he was sworn in as president on Friday because he had not divested his interests in the Trump Organization. Some of them being:
• Leases held by foreign-government-owned entities in Trump Tower in New York
• Bookings at Trump International Hotel at the Old Post Office in Washington, D.C.
• Payments from foreign-government-owned broadcasters related to The Apprentice and other transactions and leases at a broad array of other establishments owned or licensed by Trump
At issue is the aforementioned, Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution which says,
“no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust … shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”
Sheri Dillon, a D.C. lawyer who represents Trump as a tax counsel said that Trump,
“wants to do more than what the Constitution requires… he’ll voluntarily donate all profits from foreign government payments made to his hotels to the United States Treasury. This way, it is the American people who will profit.“
But the lawsuit says that IS the problem — if there are foreign government profits at stake, the president CANNOT legally accept them in the first place.
Ultimately, it’s going to be up to a federal judge to decide whether will go forward. The first hurdle the lawyers suing Trump face is winning standing to bring the case — that is, persuading a judge that they have been directly harmed by Trump’s actions.
Richard Painter, the chief White House ethics lawyer under President George W. Bush, told NBC News that the group thinks it has a good shot in the Manhattan court.
Others prominent lawyers leading the litigation include Norman Eisen, President Barack Obama‘s top White House ethics adviser, and Harvard University law Professor Laurence Tribe, co-founder of American Constitution Society. (via NBC News)