The controversies are never ending for the newly sworn in president, Donald Trump. On Monday, news broke that Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has filed the paperwork for a federal lawsuit against the new president. The legal watchdog group claims that President Donald Trump is guilt of violating the highest law in the land, the United States Constitution. The paperwork filed in the Southern District of New York alleges that Trump’s businesses accepting monetary payments from foreign government. If these claims can be proven, this means that Trump was in direct violation of the Foreign Emoluments Clause. This constitutional provision that prohibits anyone in an office of profit or trust from accepting any sort of money or profit from a foreign state without the approval of Congress.
The Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington watchdog group explained their lawsuit in a recent press release.
“As a direct result of [Trump]’s purposeful refusal to acknowledge that he is submerged in conflicts of interest and his purposeful refusal to take precautions necessary to avoid those conflicts,” the press release says, “[he] is now committing and is poised to continue to commit many violations of the Foreign Emoluments Clause — some documented, and others not yet apparent due to the complex and secretive nature of [Trump]’s business holdings — during the opening moments of his presidency and continually thereafter.”
In the press release, the group also explains that they asked the court to define the elements of the Foreign Emoluments Clause. They hope that the court will also issue an injunction that will forbid him from continuing to accepting any more of these such payments.
Despite the previous questions of Trump’s business transactions, the new president has refused to divulge the activities in question. The watchdog group alleges that Trump is accepting financial benefits from other countries, such as China, Indonesia and the Phillippines. They also claim that he receives favors from other foreign countries, such as discounts on real estate.
Despite the attention and support that the group has received, CREW’s Executive Director Noah Bookbinder explains that the lawsuit was a last resort.
“We did not want to get to this point. It was our hope that President Trump would take the necessary steps to avoid violating the Constitution before he took office. He did not. His constitutional violations are immediate and serious, so we were forced to take legal action.”