Court dismisses lawsuit challenging Trump over hotel profits

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The lawsuit, brought by the attorneys general of Maryland and Washington, D.C., claimed that earnings from the hotel and its related businesses violated prohibitions against receiving benefits from foreign governments, the USA, or individual states.

A three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled unanimously that the attorneys general did not have the standing to bring the lawsuit and instructed a lower court to dismiss the lawsuit.

A federal appeals court on Wednesday ruled in favor of President Trump's business interests, tossing a lawsuit brought by Maryland and Washington, D.C.

"Word just out that I won a big part of the Deep State and Democrat induced Witch Hunt".

At the 4th Circuit, Trump's attorneys were appealing a ruling from a District Court judge in Maryland who allowed the case to move forward and adopted a broad definition of the emoluments ban to include "profit, gain, or advantage" received "directly or indirectly" from foreign, federal or state governments. "I don't make money, but lose a fortune for the honor of serving and doing a great job as your President (including accepting Zero salary!)". Although the court described a litany of ways in which this case is unique, it failed to acknowledge the most extraordinary circumstance of all: "President Trump is brazenly profiting from the Office of the President in ways that no other president in history ever imagined and that the founders expressly sought - in the Constitution - to prohibit", attorneys general Karl Racine of D.C. and Brian Frosh of Maryland wrote in a joint statement. 'This latest effort at presidential harassment has been dismissed with prejudice'.

The lawsuit concerns the president's real estate empire and whether businesses in Maryland and the District of Columbia have lost revenue as a result of having to compete with the high-profile network of Trump Organization hotels, a prominence only made possible by Trump's ascent to the presidency and his company's decision to accept bookings from foreign entities.

The attorneys general from Maryland and the District of Columbia had brought the case, arguing that the president violated a constitutional clause that prohibits elected officials from doing business with foreign governments without permission from Congress.

In the ruling, the appeals court held that Trump's interest in his D.C. hotel - which continues to be patronized by foreign officials - does not in itself prove that the profits necessarily affect him.

The panel also hit out at the federal judge who refused to dismiss the case, saying that he "erred so clearly".

The attorneys general from Maryland and District of Columbia issued a statement regarding the court's decision this afternoon.

President Donald Trump arrives to speak about kidney health at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, Wednesday, July 10, 2019, in Washington. Trump appealed that ruling to the Fourth Circuit.

A similar case brought by almost 200 congressional Democrats in the District of Columbia's federal court also deals with the idea that Trump is using the presidency for his personal profit, but that case is uniquely different in that the Congress is specifically mentioned in the emoluments clause itself. "Today's pair of decisions by the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals is a complete victory", he told Reuters.

"All Americans suffer when our chief executive is vulnerable to corrupt foreign influence", they continued.

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