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Blumenthal And Nadler Sue Trump Over Emoluments Clause

Alex Brandon
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., arrives for a vote on Capitol Hill in May 17, 2018 in Washington.

Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Congressman Jerry Nadler of New York City are challenging President Trump for allegedly violating the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause. A federal judge in Washington, D.C., is scheduled to hear arguments in the case on Thursday.  

Blumenthal says the Emoluments Clause forbids U.S. public officials from receiving gifts of value from foreign governments without the consent of Congress.

“This argument on Thursday will essentially put to the test the proposition that no one is above the law, not even the president,” Blumenthal said.

The Senator accuses Trump of allegedly receiving benefits from foreign governments through his Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., and alleged Chinese government investments in a Trump Organization resort in Indonesia. Blumenthal says none of these were subject to congressional oversight.

“And it comes down to whether I can do my job. Very simply.”

Representative Nadler says Trump’s true loyalty is also in question.

“Is every decision he makes totally in the public interest or is it influenced by private consideration? That’s what the Constitution was designed to prevent.”

Lawyers from the Washington, D.C.-based Constitutional Accountability Center will be arguing the case on behalf of Blumenthal, Nadler and 200 other members of Congress.

Trump’s lawyers have defended him in two other cases by claiming that, as President, he has absolute immunity from lawsuits over foreign money.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.