In what The Washington Post described as a “first of its kind” lawsuit, the attorneys general for D.C. and Maryland sued the president on Monday for allegedly violating the Constitution “by accepting millions in payments and benefits from foreign governments since moving into the White House.” The suit revolves around whether Trump’s continued ownership of his business empire violates the emoluments clause prohibiting any “Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust” from receiving “any present, Emolument, Office or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.”
According to the Post, Monday’s lawsuit represents the “most significant legal challenge to Trump over the issue of emoluments.” The attorneys general are arguing that the Trump International Hotel near the White House may be hindering business at taxpayer-owned and subsidized convention centers in D.C. and Maryland. The lawyers also say Trump received illegal financial favors from the federal government when it came to leasing property.
A federal judge will now decide whether this case proceeds, but its mere existence puts Trump on the defensive on yet another front. His opponents have been rooting lately for the Russia investigation to take him down, but maybe it’s the courts that end up undoing our famously litigious president.