It was a story that loomed over the Trump presidency throughout his four years, due to breathless reporting about every possible way that the billionaire real estate mogul might profit while in office.
The Supreme Court just put an end to such endless speculation by dropping the emoluments clause cases. The Associated Press reported:
The Supreme Court on Monday brought an end to lawsuits over whether Donald Trump illegally profited off his presidency.
The justices threw out Trump’s challenge to lower court rulings that had allowed lawsuits to go forward alleging that he violated the Constitution’s emoluments clause by accepting payments from foreign and domestic officials who stay at the Trump International Hotel and patronize other businesses owned by the former president and his family.
This part is absolutely key:
The high court also ordered the lower court rulings thrown out as well and directed appeals courts in New York and Richmond, Virginia, to dismiss the suits as moot now that Trump is no longer in office.
An overview of the lawsuits against Trump involving the emoluments clause, briefly explained:
Until recently, there had been no substantial litigation concerning the Emoluments Clauses. However, since 2016, a number of private parties, state attorneys general, and Members of Congress have filed lawsuits against President Trump, alleging that his retention of certain business and financial interests during his presidency—and his failure to seek congressional approval of interests relating to foreign governments—violate the Foreign and Domestic Emoluments Clauses. Three major federal lawsuits concerning the Emoluments Clauses have been filed.
These lawsuits were Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) v. Trump; District of Columbia v. Trump; and Blumenthal, et al. v. Trump. They all pertain to Donald Trump purportedly receiving ill-gotten gains from his Trump Organization real estate properties.
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The topic fueled late night cable news fury for the last four years. But now it is yet another in a long line of debunked attacks on the Trump presidency. Rachel Maddow is hardest hit.
OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.