June 06, 2018

Cardin Welcomes Beginning of Oral Arguments in Foreign Emoluments Case

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement ahead of oral arguments beginning Thursday morning in Blumenthal, Nadler, et al. v. Trump. Cardin is a plaintiff in the case and led the Senate in introducing a resolution calling on President Trump to remove conflicts of interest between his office and his private business by divesting his assets or placing them in a blind trust:

“I welcome the beginning of oral arguments in this important case. The Constitution is very clear about preventing all federal office holders, including the president, from accepting foreign emoluments, barring congressional approval. President Trump could have avoided litigation entirely by having taken appropriate steps ahead of his inauguration to divest his assets or place them in a blind trust. He not only chose not to, but the Trump Organization has continued its business activities to his and his family’s benefit. As a plaintiff, it is our hope that the court will allow this case to move forward and ultimately rule that the president must comply with the Constitution by seeking congressional approval for the numerous, generous emoluments he receives on a seemingly daily basis. The president must not deny Congress its ability to fulfill its constitutional responsibility.”

Background:

Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the U.S. Constitution provides that “no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under [the United States], 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.”