Trump Wins Major Emoluments Decision

I have previously written about my fundamental disagreement with the aspects of the emoluments challenges filed by various academics. We discussed the prior denial of the challenge by the Fourth Circuit. Now, the D.C. Circuit has issued a unanimous rejection of the challenge. It is a major victory for the Trump Administration and again raises the questions over the coverage of these claims, which largely omitted discussion of the considerable barriers facing these filings. It is a rejection of the challenge brought by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) and 215 other members of Congress.

The three-judge panel — Judges Karen Henderson, David Tatel and Thomas Griffith — unanimously ruled that the Democratic lawmakers lack the standing to challenge the President.

The court noted that

“The Members can, and likely will, continue to use their weighty voices to make their case to the American people, their colleagues in the Congress and the President himself, all of whom are free to engage that argument as they see fit. But we will not — indeed we cannot — participate in this debate. The Constitution permits the Judiciary to speak only in the context of an Article III case or controversy and this lawsuit presents neither.”

In other words, do not darken our doorstep again.

Earlier the Fourth Circuit rejected this challenge in a separate case.

The challenges were filed a couple years ago by law professors and advocacy groups.  Previous filings were made by CREW’s board chair and vice-chair Norman Eisen and Richard Painter, Constitutional law scholars Erwin Chemerinsky, Laurence H. Tribe and Zephyr Teachout, and Deepak Gupta of Gupta Wessler PLLC.   Eisen was later hired by the House Democrats to help direct its investigations against Trump.

Judge Paul Niemeyer declared these theories as speculative and  “simply too attenuated” to satisfy constitutional analysis. He noted that many people, including diplomats, likely avoid the hotel due to its association and it is not clear what the injunction would do for a hotel bearing the President’s name: “the Hotel would still be publicly associated with the President, would still bear his name, and would still financially benefit members of his family.”

The ruling also supports the argument of the White House that it is important for the President to be able to go to court to raise such challenges, an issue that was at the heart of the impeachment debate. I testified that the House was premature in its impeachment after arguably the shortest period of investigation of any presidential impeachment. That abbreviated period made going to the court (rather than yielding to congressional demands) an effective high crime and misdemeanor. While the issues were not same, the point is that there are a variety of challenges that past Administrations have raised in such cases. Both branches have turned to the judiciary to address such conflicts. Indeed, both Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton were allowed to take challenges all the way to the Supreme Court before facing impeachment.

Here is the opinion: Blumenthal v. Trump

66 thoughts on “Trump Wins Major Emoluments Decision”

  1. Off topic. The Brits need to build up a border to keep out the migrants who wash up on shore in Greece and make their way unimped across lame duck Europe. Mister Johnson: Build a wall!

    1. oh, they head their way to Germany, that’s where the boodle is. Not the poor, rocky beaches of Greece

      and trust me, socialists or not, they don’t want them staying there in Greece either

      1. Greece can’t afford anyone since they tried that retire at 55 nonsense and couldn’t get the rest of Europa and USA to fund their indebtedness.,

        Sweden pulled out of socialism with a vengeance not only banning it but banned welfare as well. Unlike England neither of the first two examples want their population raped on a daily basis another reason to ban immigrants from uncivilized countries,

        Luckily so far we’re limited to NYC, SF, LA, Chicago and a few others in that latter mentioned description, But getting rid of Schumer, Pelosi and the Squat would go a long way to change even that situation.

  2. All I think about when I see that loathsome Blumenthal’s name is how he lied to the voters of Connecticut.about his service in Viet Nam!

    He put the con in Connecticut!

  3. Nancy needs a shredder. Congress can buy one. The President cannot object. The Supreme Court needs clerks and should be able to pay them with public money.

  4. “White House fires Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman

    Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, an adviser on the national security counsel who testified in the impeachment trial, was fired from his post.

    “Today, Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman was escorted out of the White House”


    1. NPR was whining about how people might feel intimidated by this

      not much I thought; after all, he walked out on his own two feet

      now if Trump were the dictator he’s falsely accused to be, that would have been a sidewise exit

    2. Super REMF got what he deserved for violating his Oath of Office. In the old days he’d be handed a pistol with one bullet., No he’s got a chance at a phony worst seller for the two dollar table as a payoff.

    3. It may have already been mentioned here, but Amb. Smiley Sondland got the ax too.

  5. sound reasoning:

    “The Supreme Court’s recent summary reading of Raines
    that “individual members” of the Congress “lack standing to
    assert the institutional interests of a legislature” in the same
    way “a single House of a bicameral legislature lacks capacity
    to assert interests belonging to the legislature as a whole,” Va.
    House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill, 139 S. Ct. 1945, 1953–54
    (2019), puts paid to any doubt regarding the Members’ lack of
    standing. Here, the (individual) Members concededly seek to
    do precisely what Bethune-Hill forbids. See Appellees’ Br. at
    12 (asserting Members’ entitlement “to vote on whether to
    consent to an official’s acceptance of a foreign emolument
    before he accepts it . . . is not a private right enjoyed in [his]
    personal capacity, but rather a prerogative of his office).”

    easy decision under existing law.

  6. Most dermatologists agree that we should take advantage of the emollients clause and apply emollients daily.

  7. OK, Turley, why not make clear to the Trumpsters out there that when a court rules that parties lack standing to bring a claim, that does not mean that the opponent is in the right, nor does such a ruling address the merits. Trump is charging $650 per room per night per agent to us taxpayers for hotel accommodations at his properties. There have been billings for rooms when Trump wasn’t even at the property, and the Secret Service has violated the law by refusing to say how many of our taxpayer dollars have gone into his pocket so far. which they are required to do every 6 months. We do know that Trump has taken more vacations in his 3 years than Obama did in his 8 years, and they are mostly at his properties, where he charges us taxpayers premium rates compared with other hotel rates in the area. This stinks to high heaven, and is not OK with me.


    Another disingenuous tack you have taken is to compare Bill Clinton and Richard Nixon’s limited court challenges to certain items with Trump’s wholesale refusal to cooperate on the grounds that he is not subject to process, and that he can do whatever he wants. The SCOTUS in U.S. v. Nixon made clear that there is no such wholesale immunity or blanket executive privilege. Trump doesn’t care, and his lawyers could, and would, have drug out the battle over documents and witnesses long past November, 2020. 48 U.S. Senators voted against Trump, including one Republican. This is the first time in U.S. history that a POTUS was voted against by a member of his own party in an impeachment. That is not insignificant, and is nothing to be proud of, much less fodder for a victory tour. Several of the others who voted for him knew his was guilty, too, including Susan Collins, who felt that Trump learned his lesson (Ha!), and Lamar Alexander, who said that he preferred that voters decide, which is shirking his oath of office.

    I now see where Kellyanne gets it from.

    1. D plus for that essay Nuthatch. Try reading the decision before you blabber on with the usual. You would have got an F but yes at least you understand it does come down to standing. Now go back and learn how that operates in this context.

    2. Natch………Little George(Bush) played 24 rounds of golf during his 8 yrs in office.
      Obama played over 270 rounds of golf in his 8 years as prez.

    3. Gimme whine whine whine from Pelosi’s vine vine vines
      a yard at a time time time is what my programmer said.

      Not bad for programmed machine part of the Collective but not good enough,

  8. What a bunch of dream team geniuses! Hello! What is it about standing that you cannot grasp??

    1. They were using that great app that Hillary flunkies developed to take out Trump via Iowa


      “State Democratic Party officials have expressed increasing frustration with Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez over his handling of the fallout from the Iowa Caucus, and one member of Congress has even called for Perez to resign, Politico reported on Friday.

      “Oh yeah,” Representative Marcia Fudge (D., Ohio) told Politico when asked whether Perez should go. “We’re a party in chaos.”

      Representative Bennie Thompson (D., Miss.) also expressed dissatisfaction with Perez’s handling of the crisis.

      “It’s just a matter of time before he’s going to go,” Thompson said.

      Officials in the Democratic Party were angry with Perez after the DNC Chair took one day to respond publicly to the delay in caucus results. State party members thought Perez had left the Iowa party chairman, Troy Price, to absorb the blame for the delay.

      “Loads of state party chairs are pissed that [Perez] would treat one of their peers like this,” one state party official commented.”

      National Review

  9. Trump is really getting sick and tired of being accused of all the things he has done.

    1. lol finally you made a joke i can laugh at

      nonetheless, the article III judges have made the right decision, with respect for separation of powers

    2. Only to find out they added up to nothing. Just like the machinei part accusers of the Collective.

  10. Finally the ___ is hitting the fan for the Democrats. They have spent 3 years concocting lies and smears about conservatives and the President while ignoring the opportunities they could to work with a President who was far more aligned with many of their values. Yet they continue to go down the path to nowhere in their threats against the administration. They are an embarrassment to the US.

  11. Henderson – GHW Bush
    Tatel – Clinton
    Griffith – GW Bush

    Thought I’d get that out of the way.

    Full disclosure…I have no idea how lawyers develop their practices or how they are monitored.

    Perhaps lawyers need to have a score, like FICO, that tracks their legal practice history. Then limit what areas of the law they are allowed to practice in by their legal score. How many lawyers would participate in lawsuits such as this knowing they risk a hit to their score if they lose?

  12. “In other words, do not darken our doorstep again.”

    How about: “In other words, this is a frivolous lawsuit and sanctions are in order.”

  13. It must be embarrassing to prominent lawyers like Lawrence Tribe that couldn’t stop going after the President on this and other issues. This shows how in their minds the law has been replaced with how they feel. One can no longer rely on these formerly prestigious lawyers for their opinions. They have descended from the mountains and landed in sh!t.

  14. I actually did take Jon Turley seriously, even when I listened to him in front of congress. Although I disagreed, I had respect for him. But after reading his stance on how Nancy Pelosi has “shredded” decades of tradition, I no longer can.. (BC someone else comes to mind, and no its not Nancy Pelosi, it’s the semi literate “Greatest Genius” in the white house.

    1. At last someone with a real verifiable sort of human name, Too bad your still following the party line.

  15. It is a rejection of the challenge brought by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) and 215 other members of Congress.

    Da Nang Dick. Another example, in case you needed one, of the acceptability of utter fabrication in big time Democratic politics. In New York, Bruce Caputo got caught in 1981 with a deception a couple of ratchets lower on the scale than Da Nang Dick and his career was over.

  16. No worries. Pelosi et al will take their truckload of horse manure, put it in reverse, and drive maniacally like they have these past 3 years until they hit someone, anyone, who enjoys inhaling their crap

    But what to do with the trolls who have lost yet another talking point against President Trump?

    Stay tuned for their reliable “Democracy dies in Truth-twisting” journal of record….Wah Putz

    And now to you Anon, Peter Shill, Natcha, Ynot, yada yada yada…take it from here

  17. “Senators Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) and 215 other members of Congress”

    “Senators Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) and 215 other Democratic members of Congress”

    There, fixed that one. Important to show where the stupidity lies.

    Another part of the rolling coup fails – but that won’t stop them from trying again.

    1. Not quite. Democrats are in no way democratic and as we all know speaking for the Constitutional Centrists Coalition are hiding behind a false name instead of saying We’re Socialists ,,, except for a few who refused to take the oath of office and are illegals several or more who are rohnioeally Independent Constitutional Democrats, But then most o ftheir party seem to be nothing more thasn programmable machine parts.

    2. Most aren’t and haven’t been democratic since 1909 but using thier terms liberal progressives. but in modern terms socialists.

    1. China, if you’re listening…

      Time to realize that electoral politics will be played in hack territory forevermore. All of it will come out.

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