Federal Judge Throws Out Emoluments Complaint Against President Trump

CREW_logo_400px_wide160px-Official_Portrait_of_President_Donald_Trump_(cropped)With much fanfare months ago, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed a lawsuit alleging that President Donald Trump had violated the emoluments clause. The constitutional challenge was billed as meant “to stop President Trump from violating the Constitution by illegally receiving payments from foreign governments.”  I previously stated that the lawsuit was unlikely to succeed.

CREW is represented in the case by CREW’s board chair and vice-chair Norman Eisen and Richard Painter, the top ethics lawyers for the last two presidents, Constitutional law scholars Erwin Chemerinsky, Laurence H. Tribe and Zephyr Teachout, and Deepak Gupta of Gupta Wessler PLLC.

Eisen spoke on behalf of the team in declaring “of course an organization is injured when it has to respond to a flagrant violation of the law.” That is not how the court saw it in dismissing the entire action without a trial.

New York Judge George Daniels in the Southern District of New York found a “lack of standing” and that such controversies should be directed to the political process.  The court specifically rejected the notion that other restaurants and businesses suffered a cognizable legal injury from the alleged emoluments violation in properties like the Trump hotels.

There are similar lawsuits brought in Washington and Maryland against Trump.

 

Here is the decision: Emoluments decision

282 thoughts on “Federal Judge Throws Out Emoluments Complaint Against President Trump

  1. L4D,…
    I had to use this reply box…there were numerous typos in the earlier reply, which I could not proofread until it posted.
    The request was that you clarify your disagreement with what I wrote re Velesnitskaya’s visa and FARA issues.
    I didn’t see any specific factual objections in response to my summary of V’s FARA and Visa issues in your replies 2-3 days ago, or in your comment earlier this morning.

    • Tom Nash said, “I didn’t see any specific factual objections . . . ”

      That’s because I’m not disputing the facts. Because the facts at issue don’t lead anywhere until you put them into an argument the conclusion of which might, or might not, be warranted by those facts. The facts, themselves, are stupid things that just lie there doing nothing all the live long day. Doo dah. Doo dah. Reach for a conclusion by way of entering the facts into an argument. And don’t forget the clue: Ten Rapt Men.

      • L4D,…
        I would say that there is a fundamental difference in the way that we view facts.
        You claim that “the facts, themselves,are stupid things that just lie there doing nothing all the live long day”.
        I think that facts are extremely important.
        I’m not going to review all of the back and forth exchanges that started with your second posting of the link from the NY TIMES about Veselnitakaya.
        Given that the post was from October, and it was largely a rehash of facts learned last summer, I had a specific purpose in commenting on that article.
        Beside being dated, the article excluded relevant facts.
        I won’t review the supplemental facts that I presented…..they are on that thread, I put a fair amount of time and effort in laying out a number of facts.
        It’s possible that somebody who values facts will get something out of it, so even though it was addressed to you, and evidently wasted on you, it’s out there, and may have provided some information/ clarification for someone else.
        I’ve told you one of my primary objectives in my initial responses to your 2nd identical NY Times link.
        Another objective was to give an overview of some “major irregularities” surrounding the 2016 campaign.
        Those irregularities, or some of them, even predate the 2016 general election campaign.
        Those facts don’t “don’t lie there doing nothing”, and they are not “stupid things”.
        I specifically cited those facts in support of my expressed view that the 2016 election-related suspicious activities cut a broad swath across both campaigns, and at a very minimum, indicated widespread apathy about enforcement re FARA and Visa legal requirements.
        That’s not “facts just laying there” …..those facts supported my contentions that there were widespread campaign related legal issues, that agencies were AWOL in many cases, and that invvestigative bodies….there are at least three in addition to Mueller’s probe…..are contending with widespread stonewalling.
        I did not say or imply that those investigators were ALLOWING stonewalling…..I said they were contending with the stonewalling delaying or masking the quests to obtain information.
        This is a summary of what I initially laid out.
        I had no intention of neatly wrapping these invetigations up SCI style, or satisfy your repeated requests for “prospective conclusions”.
        So instead of any kind of point-by-point exchange, you dismiss everything I wrote with a broadbased, non-specific requirement of “prospective conclusions”.
        There were very clear inferences that I drew from that set of facts, and clear implications that anyone might draw from those facts.
        Had I known that you were so dismissive of facts, and dismissive that the the facts indicated stonewalling and other problems, I would not have wasted so much time in replying to you.
        When I named government agencies, and business firms, and mentioned the names of some of the principals in this case, I didn’t you to ask questions about “who is doing the stonewalling”….,I don’t know the names of every individual in every agency or business that’s involved in the stonewalling….nobody in the general public, not privy to all of the information that investigators might have…can reasonably be expected to provide a list of names of the people involved.
        I named the agencies involved, I’ve named some of the individual involved, but I considered that to be an asinine request from you.
        From the “who” back to the “why” of stonewalling, that should be self-evident.
        I think at the end of the day, there will be more criminal charges, more demotions, more dismissal.
        Most of the stonewalling is clearly an attempt to either prevent, or mitigate, the consequences to who are in the legal systems crosshairs, or may be in the crosshairs if they don’t effectively stonewall/ conceal potentially evidence.
        Knowing your view of facts prevents me from wasting my time in the future in exchanges with you.

        • Great Scot, Nash. I hope you didn’t type all that in a three-letter wide text window. Did you?

          BTW, you’re misconstruing my position on the subject of facts. Facts can be relevant to an argument that leads to a conclusion that those facts warrant. But without an argument to which the facts at issue are relevant, nor a conclusion to which that argument leads and which those relevant facts warrant, the dry recitation of the facts is, at best, a mere curiosity, and, at worst, an insinuation of something sinister without the gumption to articulate the dark deeds to which the innuendos allude. Remember: Ten Rapt Men.

          • No, I found a regular- sized reply box.
            I don’t think I miscontrued your position on the subject of facts.
            I won’t waste any more time in the future trying to have a fact-based exchange with you, or confusing you with the facts.
            I have a clearer picture of your connection with Ken….you make a great couple.
            Happy trolling, and continued success to both of you in disrupting rational discourse on this blog.

            • Thanks for playing, Tom Nash. Be advised: There exists no such thing as a sole-proprietary franchise on facts. You have a legitimate complaint against incompetence at DHS and other relevant agencies over Ms. V’s expired visa and lack of FARA registration. Your boatload of facts will not get you anything else but the usual government SNAFU. As such, you passed the IQ test with flying colors. Please forget Ten Rapt Men.

        • Facts are nothing or everything. I noticed that persons suffering from TDS seem obsessed with this use of the word “facts” as if the word is a magic super club with which they are able to vanquish all Trump defenses.

          I know someone, person A, age 80+, with a PhD in philosophy and Latin, a professional Latin teacher, who speaks and reads Old and New Testament Hebrew and Koine Greek very fluently. I also knew person B, a little ignorant pathetic Judaic (“my mom traced my lineage to Abraham”) wanna-be Pope-Rabbi, a Protestant evangelic (i.e. Zionist) self-appointed so-called “Pastor.” A and B never met; each had a mutually exclusive translation for a Bible verse. B pulled this useless word “facts” out of his hat, which accurately translates: “My argument is weak and useless compared to my opponent’s, but I’ll use this word ‘facts’ to falsely elevate my position when actually I have nothing else and grasp at straws.”

          I am a pre-suppositionalist. Whatever anyone believes is supported by prior points which confirm and support the first point. Without supporting evidence believed to be true, nothing stands on it’s own: your name, the day of the week, etc. Eventually, everything that you believe is supported by a prior belief that is unproven and unprovable, something you must take on “faith,” something you simply “chose” to believe. That’s why we have dueling experts in court. Two similarly qualified experts, presented with the exact same “facts,” can and do sometimes make mutually exclusive conclusions. One says “the surgery was required,” the other says “surgery was contraindicated.” Neither denies the facts, yet they each deny the other’s conclusion. Each “expert” “choses” to believe a mutually exclusive conclusion, denying the other’s. Neither is right nor wrong. Each jurist choses to believe one camp to X degree, and deny the other by the same ratio.

  2. It’s known that Lindsay Graham’s e-mails were hacked by Russians. It’s known that no group like Wikileaks published them. The cowering of Republican politicians (for example Graham’s 360 turn) in the face of Trump’s extreme belittlements, going after their family members,… WTH? Turning the other cheek, isn’t the Republican way. Does Trump have something on them that they don’t want exposed?

    • Who knows that. Cites, Sites, Sources? Who knows that sites like or different than Wikileakes never published them? Cites Sites Sources? Does Trump have something on them. Ahhhhh the real purpose of the post. Extreme belittlements? Wht extreme belittlements. We routinely call a machine part a machine part is that extreme or just stating the obvious Of course Trump has something on them. Not just Trump. Like any objective person we know that they don’t want their stupidity exposed. My source. Your post.

        • That’s it? unknown writer and authority on….

          and the rest were a series of comments with no facts, no cites, no sources, suppose this and possibly that and other unsupported allegations.

          you are right this time I don’t like it. You might as well be a Princeton Professor of Sociology claiming the Declaration of Independence was forged because she flunked basic grammar and punctuation.

          If that’s all you got you better run home to Comrade Bernie. he’s going to be running your party under it’s true name before long is my best guess. Scummer and Pelosillyni will be kicked out. That statement is opinion but given the depredations of the Clinton Cartel and lhe less than nodding acquaintenance the Socialist Progressive Party has with their non existent ‘Democracy and Democratic Principles’ he is going to be the nexdt party leader with with Poke A Haunt Us running his Schutz Staffel.

          So… where’s the big time source, cite, facts? Where? In the mind of some hack. but the one fact that blares and glares it’s presence? There is no such thing as the Democrat party it’s the Socialist Progressive Party and after the pieces are picked it it will be a Black American Party, A Latino American Party, A Green Party, An Alphabet Party, and the Socialist Progressive Party oh yes and the Republicans in Name Only Party. no longer Fascist but still fascist.

          Imagine… quoting an MSNBC propaganda pimp as if it had value.

          Greetings from the independent self governing and thinking citizens of the Constitutional Center.. The one’s that took the largest block of votes in the last General Elections.

          • “largest block of voters”, do you mean Bannon’s candidate? Did Bannon just say Trump was like an 11- year- old? (BTW- it’s an insult to 5th graders). Do Bannon and Limbaugh have to self-medicate to be able to stand themselves? Did an addled Bannon convince voters that Mnuchin was working for anyone other than the richest 0.1%?
            Despite their inflated sense of themselves, the apt description for advisors (e.g. Kushner and Bannon) to the current 11-year-old in office, is not senior advisor, it is cub advisor (a borrowed comment from a discussion thread).

            • Linda, I suspect that Michael Aarethun is an Objectivist–as in a disciple of Ayn Rand. It’s possible I could be wrong about that. I asked him once, months ago, and he declined an answer. About a month ago or so, I asked “)” if he was Michael Aarethun and he declined an answer until yesterday.

              Interestingly, Mr. Aarethun is exceedingly fond of denying that answers have been given to questions that he had posed. It’s a popular ploy amongst Mighty Righty Whiteys [MRWs]. Demand, deny. Demand, deny. Demand, deny. Ad nauseum. It’s symptomatic of L’Enfant Terrible Syndrome. Notice Michael’s strong negative reaction against the authoritarianism expert, Kendzior. Compare that reaction to Donald Trump Jr.’s claim that high-ranking government officials won’t let America be America. No doubt you’re already familiar with the pattern.

              So. What should we do with these MRWs? Well, to paraphrase someone I secretly admire, “Poke at them though bars in their cages.”

              • Diane – why do you secretly admire someone? Why not come out and say it? What is so wrong with openly admiring someone? Are you afraid you will fall at their feet in a puddle? Surely, you are a stronger person than that? Unless, of course, that person is someone who the rest of us hate with the hate of a thousand suns. Then, you would be open to ridicule and scorn, in which case it might be best to keep your secret. 😉

                • Paul said to L4D, “Then, you would be open to ridicule and scorn . . . ”

                  “Then???” Gee willikers, Schulteacher, thanks for the winky face. And Happy Holidays to Mark M., too .

              • Here’s a fuller version of the quotation from Donald Trump Jr.:

                “My father talked about a rigged system throughout the campaign, and people went, ‘Oh, what are you talking about?’ But it is. There are people at the highest levels of government that don’t want to let America be America.”

                So Trump is going all in on the Deep State conspiracy theory, now, as a defense against, and an attack upon, the Special Counsel’s investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election. And it’s all about letting America be America? No! This is all about letting Trump Make America FUBAR for the First Time. (That’s right–for the first time).

                You see, nobody, and Trump means nobody whosever–not even The United States Senate, let alone Barack Hussein Obama–ever even thinks about telling Trump who he can or cannot do business with. That much should have been clear from the get-go. If Trump wants to pick the lock on his chastity belt so that Vladimir Putin can finally knock Trump up with dirty Russian money, then The United States Senate must be deprived of any and all prophylactic measures against the consummation of that marriage. The POTUS must get laid so that America can be America. It is the manifest destiny of this great land of ours to be screwed by Vladimir Putin of The Russian Federation. Let’s get it on. Let’s get it on.

              • Considering the amount of times i use the word in it’s various forms while poking fun at it’s opposite or pointing out that subjectivists are part of a Platonic theory rejected by it’s original author which produces only unsupported mystical other world fairy tails and delusions based on false premises one stating ‘suspect is’ etc etc. a red flag shouting ‘this pre programmed comment approved for publication by the DNC.

                Moreover stating on automouth I am of the right is another red flag you are one of The Collective familiar with the nonsense of George Yoda Lykoff blind to the elephant but still capable plagiarizing every one from Plato to Carville when my comments are filled with references to being of the moderate center and the false statement of the far left claiming the Center of the left is the center of political discourse one of it’s fairy tails.

                It is no wonder we citizens, especially we independent thinking, reasoning self governing citizen of the USA continue to reject such failed attempts at reframing and redefining such as it’s second fairy tail that all those who disagree are conservatives.

                Number three is false statement this is a democracy,.

                As anyone cognizant of Standard American English can easilty discern in a Constitutional Republic The Center IS The Constitution add to that while democratic principles were certainly used, citing the Articles of Confederation which also described itself as Democratic Republic, the terms Democratic and Democracy were rejected by the authors and signers of The Constitution, the terms are not mentioned therein and in the journal (minutes) of the two sessions that produced the document those words were mentioned a scant nine (9) times and zero times with a positive description then rejected.

                But one must look at all things objectively, examine them, determine if they are or are not or could be useful and even while setting them aside as not useful continue to examine in light of subsequent changes. Example is the tomato plant with it’s strychnine production when used as a fruit not a vegetable IS of use.

                Something that subjectives dare not admit or think about having been told by their ruling class in a classless society not to do. That is ‘to think about.’

                From there they are given Liberal reasoning and such marching orders as

                If you can say or write something three times without contradiction you can quote yourself

                Anything said that supports The Party IS the Truth.

                I use the two spellings both correct and legal when I change email addresses due to the reticence of the provider to accept anything from the old one.

                In any case whatever your real names are. the majority of votes made possible by the largest number of votes from any block or faction was listed as 40% while the two parties split sixty. With that advantage we destoyed the DNC and shattered Hillary’s Dream of replacing Obama the anti constitutionalist dictator.

                Moreover we spent half a year destroying the Progressive Socialist Revolution in a well run, and legal, counter revolution and intend to continue doing the same.

                Who? Good Luck? Most of us were/are trained professionals in the use of the techniques of counter revolutionary war tactics, techniques, and strategy.

                Now go back to your programmer and as a famous Marine General said, Eat stuff and bark a the moon.

                I love the smell of failed revolutionaries in the morning. Six months to blow up 118 years of effort. Nice.

                Having been ridiculed and scorned go check in with your programmer……

                So who won the election in Alabama? Or is the count still in progress?

      • Lindsay Graham said he was hacked by Russians. On occasion Republicans happen onto the truth but, in service to oligarchs they take to lying like ducks take to water (Republican Rep. Noam).

        Pleeeeeeaaaaase, post a link to the RNC hacked e-mails. If info. is public, it’s potential use as blackmail is voided.

        The surmised I.Q. of the Trump team (based on their public pronouncements) make it unlikely that they avoided hacking… IF TARGETED. Certainly, other Republicans were victims, Graham admitted it.

        • Linda, the link below merely mentions the hack. It does not divulge any email content. All the other articles are similar straits. Therefore, none would not accomplish the purpose for which you plead.

          • As for as emoluments is concerned the word means a salary or other form of payment in exchange for work performed. By itself iit’s just a paycheck or bonuses if you work for MSNBC or ATT which used to be Verizon with the big orange ball logo.

            It has some legal standing accoriding to the wording in the Constitution unlike collusion which is just a word meaning a meetng where some agreement was reached … like the family minus one deciding on a surprise Christmas present or birthday party. It is not illegal.

            Or a third and current error ‘intent’ which to be illegal must be an element of the crime and then goes what was the intent so may assist either complainant or defendant. But if not an element it has no purpose either way. title 18 sec.798 of the ‘US Code for example does not include intent … Comey screwed Clinton on that one and the actual charge has yet to be used.

            Words have meanings

        • But you didn’t deny my statement. My sources is a copy of Journal of the Federal Convention, Volume 1 and 2, May 14, 1787 to July 19, 1787

          Madison, James. Journal of the Federal Convention: Volumes 1 & 2 (Fully Illustrated) (Kindle Locations 87-88). Packard Technologies. Kindle Edition.

          Where the word Democracy was mentioned nine times and all in negative fashion. There were no positive comments. From that point on it’s not a word in use in our founding nor our current operating documents.

          The Declaration of Independence our national mission statement which mentions neither Democracy, Democratic NOR Republic at all.

          Article Four Section Four which guarantees a Republican form of government but does not mention the Words Democracy

          It is discussed in some of the Federalist And Anti-Federalist Papers but not found in the law of the land.

          Nor in the Amendments.

          Nor is a President authorized to ‘ignore’ the Constitution or the Oath of Office

          Those are my sources and cites…

          The Madison Journals of the proceedings are the minutes as we call them but even the Constitution uses Journal as a required recording method.

          Given the comments made during the Federal Convention by the Founders I am continually shocked any citizen would even use the terms Democracy or Democratic. They were certainly correct in those opinions.

          However one may still say the bedrock the starting level of any political entity or government at it’s inception must use democratic principles. Having formed a city, county, or whatever and elected a Mayor, City Council, County Commissioners they have immediately jumped into the guaranteed Republic form of government mode. Republic meaning ‘for the people.’

          However the Republican Party itself has been no great supporter so I would suggest if they don’t wish to follow in the way of The Clintons and the Socialists they become the Constitutional Republic Party and host the Constitutional Centrist Coalition for ‘big tent’ purposes.

          • The “Centrist” group, is that similar to the musings of conservative, David Brooks? Do you know if David Brooks is stupid, disingenuous or both?
            He was on PBS recently expressing shock that the Dems had not recognized the diminishing middle class and taken up their standard. Really? Big money flows to his party, the Dems turned to other big money to get their party out of debt. In contrast, funding to fight ALEC, is cobbled together from the paychecks of the ever more beleaguered American worker. Where has Brooks been while the share of national income that goes to labor has been reduced to the lowest point in recorded history? Answer- voting for the party that was eviscerating labor.
            As long as people like Brooks vote Republican or third party, there is absolutely no possibility that the schemes of Mnuchin, the Koch’s, Mercer, Adelson, etc. will be thwarted. The example- McConnell’s “populist” tax bill.

            • What does that have to do with your being asked for some sites, cites, sources and proofs. Ducking the Question and reframing doesn’t work it just turns you into a Quack Quack Quack ducking the question.

              Whoever whats his name or hers is of no interest or concern. Since anyone can make up a name and a story .. media does it all the time. REJECTED. For lack of admissable evidence.

              • The center is not the center of the left nor the right nor up nor down nor backwards or forwards. In a Constitutional Republic such as ours the center IS The Constitution and Yoda Lykoff is just another cog in the Collective Machine – nitive had a few letters left over after using the three that are useful. If yo don’t know who that clown is go to Kindle Books at Amazon and look for Don’t See The Elephant It was ghost written by some one who graduated with social promotion certificates .

              • Michael,
                Are you claiming that Graham misled the public about being hacked?

                Unlike in a Kremlin-ruled nation, U.S., citizens are permitted to raise disturbing questions about the selective gathering of info. and/or its selective dissemination to the public.

                Back to commenter ” ) “, what stops the richest 0.1% from turning the U.S. into their colony? I’m not putting my faith in widely disbursed, ragtag militia groups, led by men (some of whom may be drunks) who are highly vulnerable to drone attack. Aerial community surveillance projects funded by the rich, using police for implementation were found in cities like Baltimore (elected leaders who reflect the U.S. representative republic, were in the dark about the activity). But perhaps that’s the plan, a coup by bullies aiming to ride rough shod over American peasants.

                • I am stating that having brought up the subject you have produced no evidence it even exists. No sources, no facts, no sites and no cites. i am stating that without such your comments are rejected out of hand.

                  It is not my job to make your case it is your job. If you cannot do so you lose. It is not my to check your claims it is your job to present your case. You have done so and been asked more than once and have each time evaded the only conclusion avaiable.

                  You have no case. When and if you can offer something worth while and the source of it then it will be pleasure to check your accuracy, the bonafides of the source etc. etc. You are not well known enough to be taken as Paul is at face value for you like ‘ken’ have no value.It is something to be earned.

                  And when a mistake is made or a glitch occurs one corrects and takes credit and responsibilty. such a the mysterious parenthesis ) Doesn’t matter how it happened it did. It was corrected and I took the resonsibility. But you have provided nothing and that is your fault and therefore your false premise and incorrect conclusion and your loss.

                  It will do you not good to play The Hillary. She was no good at it and you, at present are no Hillary.

                  Is that clear enough?

            • Marky Mark Mark – you are not familiar will standard citations for research? That is just sad, but not unsurprising. My guess is that you did not make the Law Review at your law school, or was it one of those online ones from California?

            • Mz. Marky, did you order this Arugula?
              ______________________________

              “Narcissistic Personality Disorder”

              Individuals with this disorder exhibit a lack of ability to empathize with others and an inflated sense of self-importance.

              Definition

              The hallmarks of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) are grandiosity, a lack of empathy for other people, and a need for admiration. People with this condition are frequently described as arrogant, self-centered, manipulative, and demanding. They may also concentrate on grandiose fantasies (e.g. their own success, beauty, brilliance) and may be convinced that they deserve special treatment. These characteristics typically begin in early adulthood and must be consistently evident in multiple contexts, such as at work and in relationships.

              People with narcissistic personality disorder believe they are superior or special, and often try to associate with other people they believe are unique or gifted in some way. This association enhances their self-esteem, which is typically quite fragile underneath the surface. Individuals with NPD seek excessive admiration and attention in order to know that others think highly of them. Individuals with narcissistic personality disorder have difficulty tolerating criticism or defeat, and may be left feeling humiliated or empty when they experience an “injury” in the form of criticism or rejection.
              ___________

              Yummy, huh?

      • I don’t think it matters rather you go by a name or ” ) ” or, both of them interchangeably (maybe for comment thread continuity- but, no big deal one way or the other). If you were threatening someone, possibly but, you haven’t done that and I haven’t seen anyone do it in the comment threads at this blog. If you were soliciting money for a personal project, possibly, but that hasn’t happened.

        No harm, no foul. The whole “taking ownership for what you say” when we’re all Joe Six-Packs at these blogs and the size of world’s population responding to blogs makes it unlikely that any of us are in the same communities, a name anchored to an unknown person doesn’t seem to have much value.

        Turley has a position as author of the blog posts so, he should and has been upfront about his authorship of opinions.
        Michael, have a good holiday. I’ve liked reading the exchanges.

      • Michael Aarethun – I straight up did not know you were hiding under the mask of ). I almost asked about you yesterday, but had other matter on my mind. Sorry. Glad you have been around all this time. I thought we had lost you. 😉

        • No it’s this old machine or whatever but I see now below each of these comment reply is a fill in the details section and one may change address, name or http if one wishes or even by accident. It wasn’t intentional….

          Merry Christmas…

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