Donald Trump’s businesses violate the U.S. Constitution, according to a lawsuit filed by the attorneys general of the District of Columbia and Maryland. The suit seeks an order stopping Trump from receiving government payments beyond his salary, Reuters reports:
Trump’s ownership in hundreds of businesses not only financially hurts Maryland and D.C. but also violates “emoluments” clauses in the Constitution that bar the president from accepting gifts from foreign governments without congressional approval as well as from domestic governments under any circumstances, according to the attorneys’ general complaint.
While Trump turned over management of the umbrella Trump Organization in January to a trust controlled by his two elder sons, he still owns his businesses, including the Trump International Hotel in Washington, and can draw revenue from them at any time.
Maryland and D.C. are presented with an “intolerable dilemma” when Trump asks them to grant his businesses land-use permissions or favors, the attorneys general allege.
Neither the DOJ or the White House has commented on the lawsuit.