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Maryland, DC attorneys general plan lawsuit against Trump

Orlondo Matamoros | Junio 13, 2017, 00:05

In March, two owners of the Cork Wine Bar sued Trump and the International Hotel, saying the president's affiliation with the government-owned property has an unfair financial advantage. That arrangement means that he will benefit from the success of the business, even if he doesn't reap the rewards until after he leaves office.

The lawsuit focuses on alleged violations of the emoluments clause of the Constitution, based on Trump's real estate holdings.

President Trump said in January that he would avoid conflicts by turning his businesses over to his sons to run, that he wouldn't pursue new deals and that he would donate any profits derived from foreign government-linked entities.

The suit cites the president's luxury hotel in Washington, which has been at the center of concerns about conflicts of interest, and his worldwide network of hotels, golf courses and other commercial properties. The response, in a word, is heartening.

The White House didn't immediately respond to requests for comment Monday.

DC Attorney General: "President Trump's businesses and his dealings violate the Constitution's anti-corruption provisions".

The GSA initially said Trump would have to fully divest from the hotel after the election.

This new lawsuit, however, will claim that Trump's inaction on this matter is negatively affecting D.C. and Maryland themselves by pulling business away from taxpayer funded convention centers.

"The most important point is to prevent the president from putting his interests over our interests, over your interests, over the interests of all Americans", Frosh said.

That question is being raised by a new legal challenge to Trump's continued ownership of far-flung businesses. "Trump is the framers' worst-case scenario; a president who would seize office and attempt to exploit his position for personal financial gain with every governmental entity imaginable, across the United States or around the world". That lawsuit was initiated by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

She recently accompanied the president on his first foreign trip, a nine-day journey through Saudi Arabia, Israel, Italy and Belgium that marked her first extended turn as first lady in the public spotlight. Comey told the Senate panel Sessions did not answer him when he expressed concerns about one-on-one meetings with President Trump. "He told aides gathered in one meeting who had asked whether it was time to hire private lawyers that it was not yet necessary, according to another person with direct knowledge".

"If the Justice Department is correct, the emoluments clause has no meaning whatsoever", said Frosh, the Maryland official.

The Republican National Committee in a statement called the lawsuit "absurd". DC attorney general Karl Racine and a spokeswoman for the U.S. Department of Justice could not immediately be reached. But he remains the sole beneficiary of the trust. "This is one he can't climb over and he can't dig under".