Lawsuit Alleging that Coin-Operated/Spy Trump is Violating the Constitution by Doing Business with Foreign Governments Allowed to Proceed

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From [HERE] A federal judge on Wednesday rejected [ruling, PDF] US President Donald Trump’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that Trump is violating the Constitution by doing business with foreign governments.

This lawsuit was brought forward in June 2017, when the attorneys general of Maryland and the District of Columbia [official websites] accused Trump of violating the foreign and domestic emolument clauses [text] of the Constitution. These clauses are in place to prevent the federal government to accept gifts or bribery from foreign governments.

Shortly before Trump’s inauguration, he had stated that he would remove himself from all business dealings involving the Trump Organization [corporate website]. He also stated that any profit the Washington Trump Hotel received from foreign government would be donated to the US Treasury. The plaintiffs are arguing that this has not occurred.

Since the President’s election, a number of foreign governments or their instrumentalities have patronized or have expressed a definite intention to patronize the Hotel, some of which have indicated that they are doing so precisely because of the President’s association with it. … The President has at no time sought the consent of Congress for him to accept the revenues the Hotel receives or could potentially receive from these foreign governments, nor has Congress ever approved the receipt of such revenues.

Trump moved to have the case dismissed for failure to state a claim. With the judge’s denial, this is the first case to move forward [JURIST news archive] against a currently sitting president for violation of the emolument clauses.