Trump Can Accept Payments From Foreign Governments, Justice Department Argues

Trump's Justice Department fires back on claim he violated the Constitution

The DOJ's argument comes in response to a lawsuit filed by ethics watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) shortly after the president's inauguration.

Lawyers for the government also contended the plaintiffs' interpretation of the Emoluments clause is flawed.

CREW has been actively calling out Trump's administration on ethics issues, including demanding to see the president's tax returns.

"Plaintiffs read these Emolument Clauses expansively to cover any benefit derived from any business dealings with a foreign, federal, or state instrumentality by an entity in which the President has a financial interest", the Justice Department said in a memorandum. They asked Judge Ronnie Abrams for the U.S. District Court in Southern New York to dismiss the suit "for lack of subject matter jurisdiction or for failure to state a claim".

As The Hill reported, DOJ lawyers have sought to have the lawsuit thrown out, contending "that the foreign emoluments clause doesn't apply to "fair-market commercial transactions" like payments for hotel rooms and golf club fees'".

Trump appelle le Qatar à arrêter de financer "immédiatement le terrorisme"
Nous estimons que ce sont des conséquences involontaires, surtout pendant le mois sacré du ramadan, mais on peut y remédier immédiatement', a-t-il déclaré.

The government claimed that if the Emoluments Clause - a section of the Constitution that bars members of the government from receiving such payments or gifts from foreign governments without congressional approval - is interpreted to mean that Trump can not accept such payments at his hotels, golf course, and other venues, that reading would mean even the nation's first president, George Washington, would have been found in violation.

In a filing in Manhattan federal court on Friday, the justice department argued that the plaintiffs in the case - an ethics non-profit, restaurant group and hotel events booker - do not have legal standing to sue. Furthermore, the Justice Department claims, the proposed injunction would violate the separation of powers, since dealing with the suit would impede the president's ability to perform his duties, and such an impairment can not be forced upon one branch of the government by another. "We heartily disagree and look forward to our day in court", CREW's Communications Director Jordan Libowitz says in a statement about the administration's motion. In addition, the Trump Organization vowed not to make any new business deals outside the USA while Trump is president. Trump originally promised that the Trump Organization would not make any new business deals outside the US and that it would forfeit any profits made from business with foreign governments.

Lin argues that because the organization is calling into question payments for everything from hotel stays to foreign trademarks addressing the challenge would tie Trump up in prolonged litigation and keep him from doing the job he was elected to do - and it's Congress, not the courts, that should address the President's overseas income.

The Justice Department doesn't see it that way. They need that in order to have standing to sue in federal court.

In requesting that a judge in NY dismiss a case brought against Trump for violating government ethics rules, the Justice Department on Friday appeased a president who has routinely asserted that his business is, well, his business, and he can use his office to line his and his family's pockets in any way he sees fit.

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