Supreme Court won’t revive Trump case brought by Democrats

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The Supreme Court has declined to revive a lawsuit filed by members of Congress against the president

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court declined Tuesday to revive a lawsuit filed by members of Congress against President Donald Trump alleging that he illegally profits off the presidency.

The high court said it would not hear a case filed by Democratic members of Congress in 2017. A federal appeals court in Washington previously ruled that the lawsuit should be dismissed.

The appeals court did not rule on whether Trump violated the law. It said only that the approximately 200 members of Congress who brought the lawsuit lacked the ability to sue.

As is typical when the Supreme Court declines to hear a case, the justices did not explain their reasoning.

Trump still faces other lawsuits alleging he violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution by accepting payments from foreign and domestic officials who stay at the Trump International Hotel.

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In May, a federal appeals court in Virginia reinstated a lawsuit brought by the state of Maryland and the District of Columbia. A similar lawsuit brought by by restaurant workers and a prominent restaurateur and hotelier is also ongoing.

In July, the court voted to pause the lawsuit. In a June court filing, DOJ lawyers argued that the subpoenas were “intrusive and burdensome.”

“If the stay is not extended, the President would be irreparably harmed, because this unprecedented and potentially sprawling suit would be allowed to continue and plaintiffs would be able to probe into his personal finances solely because of the office he holds,” DOJ lawyers wrote in the filing.

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and District Attorney General Karl Racine — both Democrats — hoped the ruling would jumpstart their efforts to obtain financial records showing how much state and foreign governments have paid the Trump Organization to stay at the hotel and hold events there.

Frosh and Racine, at the time, said they were disappointed that their lawsuit was being put on hold while the case is appealed to the Supreme Court.

“We are disappointed that we will not be able to resume discovery immediately because of President Trump’s continued delay tactics. We want to get to the truth about President Trump’s constitutional violations and that is what the President is attempting to prevent,” they said in a statement.

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