With his approval rating imploding by the day and his scandals exploding by the hour, it turns out Donald Trump will now have to do battle on a whole new front which will involve both of the other two branches of government. Hundreds of Democrats in the Senate and House are jointly filing a massive lawsuit against Trump in federal court.
The Democrats are suing Donald Trump over his violations of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which states that an elected officer cannot use the office to enrich himself through foreign gifts, according to the Washington Post (link). Trump has been using the office of the presidency to steer foreign business to his hotels in the Washington DC area, among various other Emoluments Clause violations.
This lawsuit has been in the works for some time, as we previously reported on (link). But it’s such a massive legal undertaking, and ventures into such unprecedented territory, that it’s taken some time to get it off the ground. But now it’s officially happening. This comes one day after Maryland and the District of Columbia sued Trump on behalf the hotels within their borders that have unfairly lost revenue to Trump’s hotels since he took office.
Although the Post hasn’t stated as much, we believe that the Democrats are using this lawsuit partially to try to get to Donald Trump’s tax returns. If the judge rules that Trump’s financial records are relevant to the lawsuit, Trump could be forced to turn them over. Failure to comply would mean he would automatically lose the suit, with a judgment against him, which could crush him financially. At such point Trump’s only way to avoid releasing his tax returns and avoid losing the lawsuit would be to resign from the presidency – and this lawsuit could end up making that happen.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report