The Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC
Janhvi Bhojwani | CNBC
The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed two cases over whether former President Donald Trump had illegally profited from his dealings during his tenure.
The lawsuits, filed by a nonprofit organization as well as the state of Maryland and the District of Columbia, alleged that the former president violated the constitution’s compensation clauses, little-known provisions that prohibit presidents from receiving gifts from local or overseas Get governments.
The cases were due to be dismissed following President Joe Biden’s election in November. Maryland, DC and Washington Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, the nonprofit that brought one of the cases, urged judges not to hear the matter.
The suits cooked for much of Trump’s presidency, an indication of the unusual ethical conflicts sparked by the president’s refusal to dismiss his business empire when he took office. The Supreme Court action came in one order with no established disagreement.
Maryland and DC claimed Trump broke that ban by receiving money when guests – often foreign officials – stayed at his Washington hotel.
CREW, which represented high-end companies allegedly competing with Trump’s own facilities, complained similarly about Trump’s hotel and restaurant properties in New York.
Deepak Gupta, a CREW attorney, argued in court records that his clients were at a “distinct disadvantage” in competing for foreign and domestic government clients: while they can offer the best of hospitality, they cannot offer the opportunity to favor the president. “”
Two federal appeals courts, based in New York and Richmond, have issued rulings that have moved the cases forward. In September the Justice Department asked the Supreme Court to overturn these decisions and resolve the dispute.
Following Biden’s election, the state and DC governments, as well as the CREW, urged the court not to take the cases.
In a brief report, DC Attorney General Karl Racine told the court: “In any event, the outcome of the recent presidential election eliminates the need for this court to intervene.”
Managing Director of CREW. Noah Bookbinder said in a statement Monday that “this major legal battle has drawn the American people’s attention for four years to the pervasive corruption that emanates from a president who does a global business and provides benefits and payments from domestic and foreign governments Claims. “
“Only Trump, who lost the presidency and stepped down, put an end to these corrupt constitutional violations and stopped these groundbreaking lawsuits,” Bookbinder said.
Brian Frosh, Attorney General for Racine and Maryland, said in a joint statement: “We are proud that a court ruled on the meaning of ‘references’ based on our case for the first time in American history and found the Constitution to be true prohibits acceptance by federal officials. ” almost anything valuable from foreign or domestic governments. “
“Our case proves once again that no one in our country – not even the President of the United States – is above the law,” they said.
The Trump Organization has not returned a request for comment.