In a panic, Donald Trump and his attorneys have scrambled to try and put a halt to the “Emoluments” case against him lodged by the Attorneys General of Washington DC and Maryland that was recently allowed to proceed by District Court Judge Peter Messitte. This is apart from the Justice Department’s effort to have the case dismissed entirely; when that motion was denied, Team Trump became frantic and appealed to the Fourth Circuit.
At issue is the fact that the discovery process in the case would allow the plaintiffs to obtain evidence stemming from the President’s financial records, which Trump has studiously kept under lock and key, despite his numerous campaign promises of transparency and vows to release his taxes. Trump never adhered to any of that, and it’s becoming clear that the reason he hasn’t is that there is clearly something he needs to keep a secret, buried in his transactions.
The Plaintiffs, AG’s Karl Racine and Brian Frosh, have already sent out nearly 40 subpoenas requesting documentation which were, according to the existing court order, due by January 3. The DOJ argues that the District Judge was acting on a “manifest abuse of discretion” in his denial of their motion to dismiss, and further argues that Trump would be irreparably harmed by the discovery of the subpoenaed materials.
Uh, that’s kind of the point.
Ironically, the brief filed by the Justice Department almost argues that the crime of violating the Emoluments Clause isn’t actually a crime, and actually attempts to use George Washington’s real estate to make its point. And in a twist that no one except everyone in the universe could see coming, they even found a way to wedge in a little whataboutism, accusing the judge of making arbitrary assessments of what would constitute violations expressly to “explain away inconvenient examples like President Obama’s likely royalties from book sales to foreign governments.”
Of course, there are no massive receipts for Obama’s “likely” sales “to foreign governments” because that’s hilariously stupid, and so is everyone in Donald Trump’s Justice Department.
Featured image via screen capture