After President Donald Trump became the 45th President of the United States of America (and trounced Hillary Clinton in doing so), democrats around the country responded in a number of ways which were according to many, frankly, unhinged. One of those ways was by filing a lawsuit, which claimed that President Trump was in violation of the Constitution’s ‘Emoluments Clause.’
On Friday, a federal judge ruled that the suit, filed by democrats in congress, could proceed, and that the group of democrats had ‘standing’ to bring the suit against the President. This allowed the lawsuit, filed by more than 200 leftist politicians and based on an arcane measure, to continue forward, based on the claim that President Trump ‘violated the constitution.’
There are two separate lawsuits that were filed by leftists, claiming that he violated the Constitution.
Specifically, they claimed that he violated an arcane clause of the document, because he continued to be tied to businesses which bear his name, and which conducted business overseas.
The emoluments clause bars elected officials from receiving gifts, payments, or benefits from foreign governments without congressional consent.
According to U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan, who was appointed to his position on by Bill Clinton, the lawsuit, led by Senator Richard Blumenthal and Representative Jerrold Nadler, can continue forward.
He ruled that congress had appropriate legal standing because President Trump did not ask them before he ‘accepted’ anything that could be legally considered as a foreign emolument.
While leftists took that as good news, the ruling did not state whether or not Donald J. Trump was in violation of the clause that they sued him under.
However, Sullivan approved the notion that because businesses owned, or tied to the president, received payments from foreign individuals and entities, Congress members had a right to sue to discover whether or not he was in violation.
The federal judge wrote that, in his opinion, the clause required that the President had to ask before accepting foreign payments, and that he had to receive a favorable reply from Congress before he could do so.
He also said that if what the leftist said was true, he was receiving prohibited foreign emoluments.
For their part, attorneys for the Commander-in-Chief have stated that money received through his business did not constitute an emolument.
They also pointed out that the Trump Organization announced earlier in 2018, that they had donated $150,000 that it described as profits from foreign governments who had stayed at his hotel in Washington D.C.
In that case, a different judge found that those AGs had standing due to alleged impact foreign business at the president’s hotel in the nation’s capital had on similar businesses in other jurisdictions.
Sullivan wrote, in his opinion, that this challenge “seeks to remedy” entirely different alleged injuries.
He also wrote that if the congress members did not have standing to bring forward this lawsuit, it was unlikely that any other person(s) or organization(s) in the country would be able to enforce the clause against the president, short of impeachment proceedings.
During a conference call with reporters, Dick Blumenthal, a man who ‘misled’ his constituents into believing he served in the Vietnam War, called the ruling a “major breakthrough” and celebrated it as a victory for the rule of law.
Blumenthal also accused the president of violating the clause “with impunity,” though it’s difficult to understand how he could possibly prove that, due to his statement that he thought this ruling would provide “access to key information” on President Trump’s income and financial dealings.
Earlier this summer, he told reporters that he was ‘concerned’ that the Trump Organization received various trademarks in China, and that the Trump Hotel in D.C., often used by foreign government entities, had hired a sales manager entirely to deal with governments looking to stay at the hotel.
This ruling does not rule on the facts of the matter, but rather on the legal appropriateness of the case at hand, and whether or not leftist politicians have a right to bring the case.
Now, the merits of the case will be debated, and it will likely be a much more interesting (and complex) series of hearings.