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On Monday, January 23, 2017, the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington sued President Trump, claiming “[t]he Foreign Emoluments Clause of the Constitution prohibits Trump from receiving anything of value from foreign governments, including foreign government-owned businesses, without the approval of Congress.

Not since 2009, when President Obama was awarded the Nobel Prize and the Justice Department determined the Emoluments Clause did not apply because the Nobel Prize committee was not a King, Prince, or foreign State, has the Emoluments Clause received so much attention. This time the question is how the clause applies to President Trump’s various domestic and foreign business interests. Is it a violation of the clause every time a foreign official stays in one of his hotels or pays rent for space in one of his buildings?

Learn more about the foreign emoluments clause by reading Article 1, Section 9, Clause 8 of the Constitution of the United States of America.

Image credit: By Noclip [CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons 

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