Donald Trump hasn’t even moved into the White House yet, but that hasn’t stopped legal experts from exploring the possibility of a Trump impeachment. Two law professors say the possibility of a Trump impeachment over new Washington, D.C. hotel is “high.”
When Donald Trump shocked the world by defeating Hillary Clinton to become the 45th President of the United States, critics quickly began discussing ways of removing the blustery reality TV star from the highest seat in public office. And though it hasn’t been two weeks since Election Day, legal experts are already arguing Trump’s stay at the White House won’t be very long.
The hashtag lighting up Twitter expresses the frustration and anger millions of Americans feel toward the new President-elect. But is there really a basis for President-Elect Trump to be impeached?
Two respected law professors say, yes, there is.
Talk of a Trump impeachment began to gather steam when the fraud case against Trump University was being heard. If found guilty, he would have faced removal from the White House for having been convicted of fraud. Instead, he settled, quickly. It was clear Trump was hoping to avoid any further scandal involving his previous fraud case.
But while Mr. Trump avoided a guilty verdict and any further discussion of impeachment over the University controversy, by paying a penalty a new “impeachment issue” has come to light.
New Questions of Impeachment Arise
Steven Schooner, Professor of Law at George Washington University, stopped by MSNBC on Monday to talk about the new possibility of an impeachment. This time, over the conflict of interest surrounding maintaining his businesses while simultaneously running the country.
Schooner pointed out that Trump could have a very real “impeachment issue” because he does business in multiple countries around the globe with “foreign states basically paying money to the Trump Organization” when they use Trump hotels.
Schooner went on to say that the General Services Administration (GSA) contract explicitly states that “no elected official of the United States government can share or benefit’ from the 60-year lease, adding it’s “unequivocally clear.”
Trump entered into the GSA contract before opening Trump Hotel in Washington, D.C.
And Schooner is not the only Law Professor to make public commentary on the issue. Laurence Tribe, Professor of Law at Harvard University, addressed the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause. The clause states that no person holding office (including the Office of President) can accept any title, office, emolument of any kind from any “any king, prince, or foreign state,” without the consent of Congress. In other words, no gifts, no perks while in office.
2/ Most presidents don't have business competitors, you say? Right. But Trump will, despite his blind trust crap. So he's uniquely suable
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) November 20, 2016
Currently, Trump’s children are working with his transition team, and present at meetings with high-level officials, despite not being members of the administration. Ivanka Trump sat it on Trump’s meetings with the Japanese prime minister, as well as a phone call with the Argentenian president.
Pressure To Stay at Trump Hotel
As if that’s not enough, The Washington Post reported several foreign diplomats have indicated they feel compelled to stay at the president-elect’s new International Hotel to get on his good side, and question whether patronage at the hotel might even buy special favor with Trump and his children.
Trump still has miles to go before he is sworn in as the next Commander-in-Chief, including the rounding out of his administration. Controversial Trump picks, including Steve Bannon of Breitbart News and retired Army Lt. General Michael Flynn, are already causing media backlash, adding to the hopeful thoughts of impeachment to his political opponents.
Featured image via Gage Skidmore/Flickr