The Strategist

196 congressmen are suing Donald Trump

06/14/2017 - 14:25

A lawsuit on behalf of the 196 congressmen representing the Democratic Party will be filed against Donald Trump in Washington. The plaintiffs believe that President violated the law by not agreeing with Congress acceptance of funds from foreign countries through companies that he actually controls.

Gage Skidmore via flickr
Gage Skidmore via flickr
Late yesterday, Senator Richard Blumenthal and Rep. John Conyers Jr., both representing the Democratic Party, announced filing a lawsuit in the Washington District Court. The plaintiffs believe that President Trump is receiving profits from transactions of companies he controls with foreign countries, which is a violation of the constitution. In the plaintiffs’ opinion, thus President Trump violated a clause specifically prohibiting state officials from gifts or rewards from foreign states.

The claim’s draft states that "the founding fathers (meaning the authors of the US Constitution) wanted to be sure that federal officials would not make independent decisions about whether certain donations of their independence would be harmful or not, or they would not put their own personal interests over national interests. A federal official should not be the sole judge of the purity of his reputation". 

This is not the first lawsuit accusing President of making profits from the business of his companies with foreign countries, including paying for accommodation of foreign diplomats in hotels belonging to Trump Organization conglomerate. Back in January, Washington-based Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics non-governmental organization filed a similar claim in the Washington court. Last Monday, prosecutors in Maryland and the District of Columbia (both are members of the Democratic Party) filed a similar lawsuit to a Maryland court. However, today's lawsuit differs from the previous ones in that the number of congressmen participating in the trial against the incumbent president is unprecedented in US history. The total number of plaintiffs-congressmen is 196, of which 166 are deputies of the House of Representatives and 30 are members of the Senate. In addition, the current lawsuit claims that not only Donald Trump’s actions violated the constitution, but also limited the right of congressmen to participate in making decisions about foreign donations and contributions to the acting federal official - the right guaranteed by the constitution.

In turn, the US Justice Department stated that "the Constitution’s authors never wanted to prevent President from having his own business and that he could not make ordinary transactions stemming from his ownership of this business".

Earlier, Texas Democrat Al Green, a member of the US House of Representatives from Texas, called for the impeachment of President Donald Trump because of his opposition to investigating his relations with Russia during the 2016 elections. The US Congress demanded that the FBI provide records of meetings of Trump and former FBI head James Comey after publication in The New York Times. The newspaper, citing an anonymous source, claimed that Trump asked Comey to stop investigating links between his ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn and Russia, and forget about what had happened. The White House denies these accusations. Comey was fired from the post of head of the FBI in May. 

Trump is experiencing the deepest crisis of his presidency, writes Bloomberg, the latest major scandals are pulling the carpet away from under President's feet, the Washington Post notes.

Trump's critics are calling for an impeachment procedure for obstructing the administration of justice. It consists in threats to the jury, bringing a counterclaim to witnesses or interfering with the work of the jury, and Trump's actions do not fall into any of the categories. The prosecutor will have to prove that President had an undue influence on the investigation, and not just expressed, for example, his concern with the process.


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