Eleven days after the inauguration of President Trump, more than half a million people have joined the campaign and petition at ImpeachDonaldTrumpNow.org, calling on the U.S. Congress to initiate an impeachment investigation into President Trump’s violations of the U.S. Constitution — citing the Foreign Emoluments Clause and Domestic Emoluments Clause, as well as violations of the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012 (STOCK Act).
RON FEIN, Press [at] FreeSpeechForPeople.org, @Ronfein
Fein is legal director of Free Speech for People. He said today: “On inauguration day, we issued the call for Congress to investigate whether President Trump should be impeached for violating the Constitution by holding onto his business interests. In just eleven days, over half a million people joined the campaign, and the movement grows with every new revelation. Donald Trump is profiting from the presidency at public expense, and people are suffering as a result.”
JOHN BONIFAZ, Press [at] FreeSpeechForPeople.org, @JohnBonifaz
Bonifaz is co-founder and president of Free Speech For People. He said: “The American people are rising. Hundreds of thousands of people across the country are now standing up to demand that Congress initiate an impeachment investigation against President Trump. Every day, the President is defying the rule of law and the Constitution. In the defense of our democracy, we must start the impeachment process now.
“President Trump’s personal and business holdings in the United States and abroad present unprecedented conflicts of interest and place him in direct violation of the U.S. Constitution. The Constitution’s Foreign Emoluments Clause provides: ‘[N]o 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.’ The purpose of this provision is to prevent foreign influence or corruption. “Emoluments” from foreign governments include ‘any conferral of a benefit or advantage, whether through money, objects, titles, offices, or economically valuable waivers or relaxations of otherwise applicable requirements,’ even including ‘ordinary, fair market value transactions that result in any economic profit or benefit to the federal officeholder.’
“Furthermore, the Constitution’s Domestic Emoluments Clause provides: ‘The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be encreased 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.’ This provision, which is not waivable by Congress, is also designed to prevent corruption.
“There is sufficient basis to investigate other potentially impeachable violations as well. For example, the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012 (STOCK Act) is one of the few federal ethics statutes that specifically includes the President. Among other provisions, it prohibits the President from (1) using nonpublic information for private profit, and from (2) intentionally influencing an employment decision or practice of a private entity solely on the basis of partisan political affiliation.”