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Since President Trump took office, there has been quite a lot of debate over whether his business dealings constitute violations of the “Emoluments Clause” and whether if so, such violations could be grounds for impeachment. Legal experts disagree over whether foreign dignitaries paying for a suite at Trump Tower would constitute the kind of “emolument” (any compensation, gift, or other form of profit or gain) for which Congress would be required to give its blessing, or about whether the president counts as a person “holding office” under that part of the Constitution. But with all the focus on Article I, we have overlooked an even more glaring problem. One, that could also be grounds for a possible impeachment of Donald Trump. In fact, this one might be the best argument to date to get him out of office.
As it turns out, there’s another Emoluments Clause. This one isn’t about foreign money—this one is about domestic money. The “Domestic Emoluments Clause,” which appears in Article II, says:
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“The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of them.”
Notice something different between this Domestic Emoluments Clause and the foreign one? Check out the text of the Foreign Emoluments Clause:
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“No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.”
Congress can sanction an emolument that comes from a foreign government. But when we’re talking specifically about POTUS, and we’re...
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