The Citizens for Responsible Ethics in Washington (CREW) claims that President Donald Trump is making huge profits from the presidency. They have compiled an extraordinary amount of research to document those claims. The timeline covers over 140 pages of printed material.
We will cover some of the worst examples here. There is a link to the full report and the timeline at the bottom of this article.
Why This is Important
The Emoluments Clause is part of the Title of Nobility Clause of the United States Constitution. It covers profits gained from foreign governments while holding public office. Trump has been violating this clause since his inauguration. It actually started following the election but wasn’t illegal until he was actually filling the office. The Title of Nobility Clause is defined as:
“The Title of Nobility Clause is a provision in Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution, that prohibits the federal government from granting titles of nobility, and restricts members of the government from receiving gifts, emoluments, offices or titles from foreign states without the consent of the United States Congress. Also known as the Emoluments Clause, it was designed to shield the republican character of the United States against so-called “corrupting foreign influences.”
Nobility. This keeps us from having a “king.” This is what our ancestors fought against during the revolutionary war when we ditched King George and all the nobility. Our Founding Fathers thought a lot about setting this country up to avoid things like Donald Trump. Unfortunately, the Electoral College they set up as the first defense failed to do their job.
Because of that, we have a president that is clearly using his position to line his pockets with the riches of our nation and foreign nations with impunity.
When it Started
According to the CREW report:
“In his first year in office, President Trump racked up more than 500 potential conflicts of interest, according to a report released today by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW).”
After chronicling Trump’s activity for the first year, CREW has documented a frightening list of conflicts of interest. Each of these resulted in profits for Trump. Among the worst:
- 122 days visiting his commercial properties
- More than a dozen state officials visited Trump properties
- More than 30 members of Congress visited Trump properties
- 70 executive branch officials visited Trump properties
- Promoting the Trump brand by mentioning Trump businesses on numerous occasions
- Special interest groups have held events at Trump properties at least 40 times
- 11 foreign governments paid Trump-owned entities
- At least six foreign government officials went to Trump properties
- Political groups had spent over $1.2 million at Trump properties (before the election the average spending never exceeded $100,000)
CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said:
Every decision President Trump makes in the course of his job is followed by the specter of corruption. Because of his steady stream of conflicts, we have to question whether each decision he makes was made in the best interest of the American people or the best interest of his bottom line.
Trump is Laughing All the Way to the Bank
On January 11, 2017, ten short days before he took office, Trump held a press conference where he pretended to sign over all his business interests to his sons. He appeared with lawyer Sheri Dillon, a podium, and a table full of file folders.
They talked. They explained what he was doing. He made a big show of signing something they wouldn’t let the press or cameras near.
Reporters who were sort of close to the cordoned-off area and the pile of file folders on the table stated that the papers appeared completely blank. Snopes rated that claim “Unproven,” but Trump has been giving us signs for a year that they were probably spot on with the observation.
He is making a fortune and laughing at the entire country. The odds are good that he will cut and run when everything is tapped. When there is no further damage he can do. There will be no more profits to be made. Trump will do what he has done several times in the past. He will walk away with all his pennies and leave us holding the broken piggy bank. Trump will be Trump.
CREW Press Release
CREW Report on Trump’s Profiteering
Featured image from YouTube video