Nearly 200 congressional Democrats sue Donald Trump over the emoluments clause

President Donald Trump.
Source: Scott Olson/Getty Images
President Donald Trump.
Source: Scott Olson/Getty Images

A massive group of congressional Democrats plans to file a lawsuit against President Donald Trump, alleging he's in violation of the Constitution for keeping his stake in his foreign businesses, the Washington Post reported.

The lawsuit — filed by 196 Democratic members of Congress — says Trump is in violation of the emoluments clause, which bans lawmakers from accepting "any present, emolument, office or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state" without the consent of Congress.

The lawmakers are seeking to stop Trump from “accepting any benefits from foreign states without first obtaining congressional consent," according to the text of the lawsuit obtained by the Washington Post.

The lawsuit comes days after the attorneys general from Maryland and Washington, D.C., also filed suit against Trump, alleging he's in violation of anticorruption clauses in the Constitution.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) has taken the lead on the lawsuit, with Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) leading the effort in the House. No Republicans have joined the lawsuit, but Blumenthal told the Washington Post that they are invited to.

The White House has not yet responded to the lawsuit.

But White House press secretary Sean Spicer said the suit filed by the Maryland and D.C. attorneys general was about "partisan politics."

"I think the president's interest, as previously discussed, do not violate the emoluments clause," Spicer said in his June 12 press briefing.


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Emily C. Singer

Emily C. Singer, née Cahn, is a senior writer for Mic covering politics. She is based in New York and can be reached at esinger@mic.com

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