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A federal appeals court on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit that challenged the legality of payments to President Donald Trump’s hotels by foreigners during his tenure in the White House.
A three-judge panel in the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled that Maryland and the District of Columbia do not have legal standing to claim that Trump violated the so-called emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution.
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That clause bars government office holders from accepting gifts from foreign officials.
The appeals panel said Washington and Maryland’s interest in enforcing that clause “is so attenuated and abstract” that it raises the question of whether their lawsuit is an appropriate use of the courts.
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The panel noted that never before had a president been sued for allegedly violating the emoluments clause, contained in Article I of the Constitution.
The panel ordered a federal district court judge in Maryland to dismiss the suit against Trump with prejudice, which would bar them from relaunching the action.
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Trump still faces a similar lawsuit in Washington federal court filed by Democratic members of Congress.
On Monday, the Justice Department urged the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to dismiss that other suit.
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Trump’s lawyer, Jay Sekulow, called the ruling “a complete victory.”
CNBC has reached out for comment from the lawyers for Maryland and Washington. The plaintiffs...
(Excerpt) Read more at: CNBC
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