Conflicts of Interest

According to President Trump, “The President can’t have a conflict of interest.” That is incorrect.

Trump’s Foreign Emoluments: Another Fig Leaf Falls Away

5/25/17  //  Commentary

Trump's widely-touted plan to comply with the Foreign Emoluments Clause has always been inadequate and riddled with tough questions. Now we have answers to some of those questions—and they confirm that Trump's hotel-related violations will persist unabated.

Joshua Matz

Publisher

Yesterday's Other Story: Republican Knowledge of Russian Interference?

5/18/17  //  Commentary

Yesterday, a Washington Post story indicated that Republican House leadership may have known that Russia had hacked the DNC and was delivering the contents of the hack to the Trump campaign.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

A Few Cheers For The Appointment Of A Special Counsel

5/17/17  //  Quick Reactions

In a welcome development, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller as a special counsel to investigate Russia-related (criminal) wrongdoing.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

The (Other) Dark Side Of The Comey Affair

5/15/17  //  Commentary

James Comey’s firing threatens more than just the rule-of-law norm against self-investigation. It also threatens the rule-of-law norm against politically motivated policing and prosecutions.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

Updates | The Week of May 8, 2017

5/14/17  //  Daily Update

Jared Kushner's sister's comments at an event in China offering visas in return for investments raised eyebrows this week. A member of Congress has requested information regarding Kellyanne Conway's business relationships.

Updates | The Week of May 8, 2017

5/14/17  //  Daily Update

CREW added another plaintiff to its Emoluments Clause lawsuit, potentially strengthening the case for standing.

The Comey Affair And Evidence Of Motive

5/12/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

The Comey affair underscores that decisionmakers must look beyond the administration’s “official” documents to determine the administration’s motives.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

On Presumptions Of Regularity, And Incidents Of Irregularity

5/11/17  //  Commentary

The Presumption of Regularity, Like All Presumptions, Is Rebuttable, Not Conclusive Evidence

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

Updates | The Week of May 1, 2017

5/7/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump's business ties raise questions about his domestic and foreign policies.

Updates | The Week of May 1, 2017

5/7/17  //  Daily Update

Jared Kushner has current business ties with Goldman Sachs, George Soros, and Peter Thiel.

Updates | The Week of April 17, 2017

4/23/17  //  Daily Update

People across the country have protested demanding to see President Trump's tax returns. The CREW's emoluments suit has progressed with the addition of two new plaintiffs who have made the case stronger.

Take Care

Updates | The Week of April 17, 2017

4/23/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump and his administration continue to run into potential conflicts of interest.

Take Care

GSA, Trump International Hotel, and the Constitution

3/24/17  //  Quick Reactions

Yesterday, the General Services Agency surprised experts by declaring that the Trump Hotel in D.C. is not in violation of its lease. But the GSA's decision itself might well violate the Domestic Emoluments Clause.

Brianne J. Gorod

Constitutional Accountability Center

New Hotel-Owner Plaintiff in CREW Emolument Lawsuit

5/11/17  //  Latest Developments

Yesterday, CREW again amended its complaint alleging that President Trump has violated the Domestic and Foreign Emoluments Clauses of the U.S. Constitution. Notably, CREW added another plaintiff: Eric Goode, the owner of several famous hotels, restaurants, bars and event spaces in New York.

Joshua Matz

Publisher

DeVos Gives Accountability the Boot

4/14/17  //  Commentary

Education Secretary Betsy DeDos has jettisoned memos that hold student loan services accountable for past performance. That hurts everyone except her buddies in the loan servicing industry.

Danielle D'Onfro

Washington University Law School

Announcing Our New Podcast: "Versus Trump"

4/20/17  //  Latest Developments

Take Care is pleased to announce the release of "Versus Trump," a new, affiliated podcast about the ways that the Trump Administration is breaking the law—and what people are doing about it.

Take Care

There’s Unquestionably Standing in the CREW Case. Here’s Why.

4/19/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

The additional plaintiffs in the CREW case unquestionably have standing.

Jonathan Taylor

Gupta Wessler PLLC

Profiting from the Presidency?

5/3/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

Tracking Corruption and Conflicts of Interest in the Trump Administration

Take Care

Reuters: State Pension Funds Paying Millions in Emoluments to Trump

4/27/17  //  Quick Reactions

Professor Jed Shugerman analyzes a Reuters report that state pensions, run by state officers, are investing and paying public money to Trump LLCs

Take Care

Standing Up For Standing in CREW v. Trump

4/26/17  //  Quick Reactions

Everyone should give a tip of the hat to the new plaintiffs in the CREW v. Trump lawsuit.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

CREW’s New and Improved Legal Complaint Against Trump

4/24/17  //  Commentary

Matthew Stephenson (Harvard Law School) analyzes CREW's emoluments clause lawsuit against President Trump, discussing the recent addition of two plaintiffs and the likely course ahead.

Take Care

[UPDATED] Trump's Innocence and the Rule of Law

5/12/17  //  Commentary

Even if Trump fired Comey because Trump knows himself to be innocent of Russia-related wrongdoing, that would still be unacceptable.

Richard Primus

University of Michigan Law School

States Can Require Financial Disclosure by Presidential Candidates to Safeguard Electoral Transparency

4/6/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

Many states are considering bills requiring future federal presidential candidates to release tax returns, or comparable information, in order to be listed on the ballot. Such requirements are good policy and should be upheld under the Constitution.

Danielle Lang

The Campaign Legal Center

On Standing In CREW v. Trump Part I: Defining The Injury

4/27/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

Critics of the standing arguments in CREW v. Trump are defining the new plaintiffs’ injury in the wrong way.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

Competitor Plaintiffs in Emoluments Clause Case Bolster Standing

4/19/17  //  Commentary

CREW has amended its complaint in the widely-watched emoluments case. The addition of two new plaintiffs should make the lawsuit bulletproof on standing grounds.

Michael C. Dorf

Cornell Law School

Versus Trump, Episode 1

4/20/17  //  Commentary

"A New Sheriff In Town" + Zephyr Teachout

On Standing In CREW v. Trump Part II: More Distinctions Without A Difference To Competitor Standing Cases

4/28/17  //  Commentary

The various ways that standing skeptics have distinguished cases supporting standing in CREW are unpersuasive.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

See You In Court 2.0

3/16/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

Last night, a federal judge in Hawaii blocked Trump's revised entry ban. Here is a detailed analysis of its decision and an assessment of what likely will happen next in that litigation.

Leah Litman

U.C. Irvine School of Law

Presidential Bad Faith

3/16/17  //  Commentary

If the President cannot be trusted to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed,” then that obligation falls on “We the People."

Laurence H. Tribe

Harvard Law School

Will Trump’s Lawyers Rewrite and Invert the Emoluments Clause?

4/18/17  //  In-Depth Analysis

NYT has leaked one of DOJ's theories in the emoluments clause case: that this is a "political question." Any such argument, however, would be exceptionally weak as a matter of text, precedent, and purpose, and would completely invert the basic operation of the Foreign Emoluments Clause.

Joshua Matz

Publisher

Updates | The Week of April 24, 2017

4/30/17  //  Daily Update

This week, Leah Litman continued her series of posts on "standing" in the CREW emoluments lawsuit. Further conflicts of interests drew attention as the Trump Administration announced its tax plan.

Updates | The Week of April 3, 2017

4/9/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump has pledged to donate his first quarter salary to the National Park Service. States are considering regulating access to ballots based on financial disclosure.

Updates | The Week of March 27, 2017

4/2/17  //  Daily Update

As Ivanka Trump expands her role in the White House, Senators call to ensure she complies with all ethics laws. President Trump's nominee to lead the FDA has reported receiving millions of dollars from large drug makers in recent years.

Updates | The Week of March 20, 2017

3/26/17  //  Daily Update

While Judge Neil Gorsuch did not reveal his views on President Trump and the Emoluments Clause this week, we saw analysis both of President Trump's domestic emoluments and of former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn and the Foreign Emoluments Clause.

Updates | The Week of April 24, 2017

4/30/17  //  Daily Update

Conflicts of interest occupied the spotlight this week as watchdog groups raised concerns about Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump. Former Trump campaign staffers are using their positions to attract foreign lobbying contracts.

Updates | The Week of April 10, 2017

4/16/17  //  Daily Update

The Government Accountability Office opened an investigation into conflicts of interests during President Trump's transition.

Updates | The Week of March 20, 2017

3/26/17  //  Daily Update

The Government Services Agency sided with Trump Hotel in Washington, D.C. on allegations that it was in violation of its lease. Meanwhile, President Trump's nominees and advisors face conflicts criticism of their own.

Updates | The Week of April 3, 2017

4/9/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump pledged to donate his first quarter salary to the National Park Service. Questions have arisen over whether states can regulate access to ballots based on financial disclosure.

Updates | The Week of March 27, 2017

4/2/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump's personal and family business connections continue to raise the specter of unconstitutional corruption.

Updates | The Week of April 3, 2017

4/9/17  //  Daily Update

President Trump's financial disclosure forms have garnered a lot of criticism. Jared Kushner's role in the White House and his relationship with Chinese officials has also been the subject of scrutiny.