Emoluments: Trump’s profits from private businesses to get hard look from federal appeals courts

Emoluments: Trump's profits from private businesses to get hard look from federal appeals courts

USA TODAY WASHINGTON – An obscure provision of the Constitution that Donald Trump ridiculed as “this phony Emoluments Clause ” will be debated in two federal appeals courts this week, representing yet another legal threat to the embattled president. Even as impeachment dominates the agenda in Congress and President Trump’s personal lawyers ask the Supreme Court to shield his tax returns and financial records from investigators, courts in the District of Columbia and Richmond, Va., will hear arguments that the president routinely receives gifts from foreign and U.S. government officials. Those two challenges and a third working its way through federal courts in New York focus on the Trump Organization’s financial stake in hotels and restaurants, which cater to customers both foreign and domestic with interests before the government Trump heads. The question: Does that violate the Constitution ? Article II: Trump’s ‘right to do whatever I want?’ Or a road map for impeachment? Democrats in Congress, the attorneys general of Maryland and the District of Columbia, and some of Trump’s competitors in New York City say the answer is yes. When a foreign official stays at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., or U.S. officials stay at […]

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