Trump/Pence: How many Violations of the Constitution?

By Christopher R Rice

A President is impeachable if he attempts to subvert the Constitution. -James Madison

Donald Trump stood in the shadow of the US Capitol and took an oath to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

“I wouldn’t say he’s bumping into the Constitution, he’s crashing through it,” said Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe, who has joined litigation against the new president on a separate matter. “I’ve never seen anything like this in my lifetime.”

TheAtlantic: The election of Donald Trump was, in procedural terms, scrupulously fair. I hold no dark suspicions of altered vote counts or intimidation at the polls. We may wish the Voting Rights Act had not been gutted by the Court; but the election of 2016 followed the law of 2016. Clearly a large proportion of American citizens—not as many as voted for Hillary Clinton, but still, under our strange system, enough—wanted Trump as their president and now hope that he fulfills the loud promises he repeatedly made to the country.

Like an admissions officer at Trump University, he offered Americans a bag of magic beans and asked them in exchange to hand over their rights and their form of government.

The Constitution is broken, and I don’t know how, or whether, it will be fixed.

The minute Trump was sworn in, he violated Article I, Section 9 of the U.S. Constitution, known as the emoluments clause.

1.) CNBC: President Donald Trump is being accused of violating a part of the U.S. Constitution that the founders put in place to curb corruption.

The attorneys general for the District of Columbia and Maryland filed a lawsuit making those claims on Monday. They accuse Trump of improperly accepting payments from foreign governments.

Their argument is that Trump — who kept ownership of his businesses when he became president of the United States — is violating the so-called emoluments clauses of the Constitution.

One of the clauses was written to ensure that U.S. government officials would not be corrupted by favors or gifts from foreign governments.

But the president retained actual ownership of the companies, meaning that he still makes money from them. Foreign governments — including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Georgia — have bought rooms or held events at Trump’s D.C. hotel since he took office. The Embassy of Kuwait even switched an earlier booking at the Four Seasons to the Trump hotel, according to the The Washington Post.

President Jimmy Carter gave his agricultural holdings to an independent trustee. Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton put investments into blind trusts.

Representatives for Trump had argued that selling his sprawling business empire or putting it into a blind trust would have been too difficult.

In January, Trump promised to track profits from foreign governments and donate them to the U.S. Treasury. But the Trump Organization has not tracked those payments. Instead, it has suggested that it’s the responsibility of those foreign governments to report the transactions, NBC News reported last month.

The attorneys general contended that Trump’s presidency has created a situation in which states could feel compelled to make policy decisions that help his businesses.

The lawsuit is the second filed against Trump over emoluments, and it’s the first filed by government entities. Watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington sued the president earlier this year.

2.) President Donald Trump’s daughter and senior adviser Ivanka will receive more than a million dollars from the family business this year, according to McClatchy‘s D.C. bureau, raising fresh concerns about apparent conflicts of interest that seem rampant among key members of the Trump administration.

Ivanka Trump, as an unpaid senior adviser at the White House, has done “everything from lobbying the Senate on tax policy to representing her father at a G20 summit of world leaders”—but that’s not stopping her from taking money from businesses associated with the Trump Organization, “the sprawling family real estate empire now run by two of her brothers.” As McClatchy reports:

When her father was sworn in, Ivanka Trump resigned her numerous vice president positions with the Trump Organization but she planned to continue to receive money from its businesses, according to her financial disclosure report filed last year, which outlined her future relationship to the companies.

Each year starting in 2017, she was expected to receive a total of $1.5 million from three companies affiliated with the Trump Organization. She was expected to receive more money from additional Trump Organization businesses but the other amounts were not detailed.

The companies involve at least five projects that have come under scrutiny for possible ethics and legal violations.

Her “continued relationship with the businesses affiliated with the Trump Organization creates countless potential conflicts of interest prohibited by federal law and federal ethics standards as she works as a special assistant to the president,” McClatchy explained. “And just like her father, she is being accused of violating the so-called emoluments clause of the U.S. Constitution that forbids government officials—not just presidents—from accepting gifts from foreign governments without the approval of Congress.”

A team of prominent constitutional scholars, Supreme Court litigators and former White House ethics lawyers intends to file a lawsuit alleging that President Trump is violating the Constitution by allowing his hotels and other business operations to accept payments from foreign governments.

3.) The report comes as Ivanka Trump’s husband, Jared Kushner—who is also a senior adviser to the president—faces increasing scrutiny over potential conflicts of interests with regard to his White House post and his continued involvement with his family’s real estate firm.

4.) USATODAY: Political interference in a law enforcement matter for personal and corrupt purposes — whether through pardons or personnel moves or directing the conduct of an investigation — is unconstitutional. That’s why it is so concerning that John Dowd, when he was one of President Trump’s lawyers, reportedly discussed the possibility of pardons for Michael Flynn and Paul Manafort with their lawyers.

By disregarding these norms, the president and the White House are also violating the Constitution. As we recently explained in a brief that we filed along with other former high-ranking Justice officials of both parties, the Constitution limits the president’s ability to interfere with individual law enforcement matters. And it will always be unconstitutional for the president to interfere with law enforcement based on personal or corrupted interests — for example, to stop an investigation of him or his associates.

VanityFair: Trump: “As has been stated by numerous legal scholars, I have the absolute right to PARDON myself,” he wrote on Twitter.

Trump’s use of his power to grant clemency to date has already been controversial. After pardoning Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio last year, Trump granted another questionable pardon to conservative filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza last week, while also floating the possibility that he might also offer clemency to lifestyle mogul Martha Stewart and commute the sentence of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. Some interpreted the pardon for D’Souza and the president’s remarks about Stewart and Blagojevich as a signal to individuals ensnared in the Mueller probe that their loyalty to him would be rewarded. “What I think he is doing though, is undermining public corruption investigations by basically saying that if you are a corrupt public official you are going to get a pass from me,” Robert Grant, a top former F.B.I. agent who headed the F.B.I.’s Chicago office during the Blagojevich investigation, told me last week. “He is signaling to people who might be witnesses against him, his family or his business interests, ‘hold the line, don’t give up anything, don’t roll over for the prosecutors because even if you get prosecuted, I am going to give you a free pass.’”

5.) ConstitutionCenter: President Trump has issued several immigration orders, ranging from those regulating immigration into the United States as well as those regulating immigrants already present in the country. Legal challenges have cropped up nationwide against these orders.

Slate: The Trump administration poses a unique threat to the rule of law.

Habeas Corpus. Lawyers at airports have been filing habeas corpus petitions around the clock for people being detained. In recent years, the Supreme Court strengthened the protections of habeas corpus for noncitizens repeatedly in rulings in cases brought by Guantánamo detainees. Less known were earlier rulings strengthening protections for noncitizens in detention facing removal, such as Zadvydas v. Davis. The national security or “plenary” power over immigration did not faze the justices in such rulings.

As law professors who teach constitutional law and immigration law, we fully recognize that executive power over immigration has long been described by courts as broad, even “plenary,” and sometimes able to, well, trump the rights of noncitizens. Yet that power is also committed to Congress, which passed no law authorizing this order. And noncitizens still have constitutional rights, sometimes quite strong ones.

6.) Family Reunification Rights.* The tragic stories of separated families bring out yet another constitutional right at stake that few have commented on: The Supreme Court has repeatedly recognized the importance of the fundamental right to family relationships. Family reunification is also of primary importance in immigration law.

7.) The Supreme Court’s ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges emphasized how multiple constitutional rights magnified the harm of denying same-sex couples the right to marry. “The Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause are connected in a profound way,” Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the majority. The constitutional violations in that case were made worse because there was discrimination—over something as important as the fundamental right to marry. Today, these constitutional violations are worse because the order discriminates on the basis of religion, nationality, and ethnicity, over rights as important as due process, the right to family relationships, and the right not to be excluded unlawfully. The equal protection, due process, First Amendment, habeas, and fundamental rights violations that we describe are important standing along but even more devastating to the legality of the order when seen in tandem. As we have written in a 2015 article, constitutional rights magnify their power when they share reinforcing interests.*

8.) TheAmericanConservative: The U.S. and its allies have committed a flagrant violation of international law, and Trump has trampled on the Constitution once again.

NationalReview: Unfortunately, the section of the Constitution that gives the power to declare war to Congress, and Congress alone, has become a section of the Constitution that most of our politicians — and our pundits — ignore. Debates on the issue these days are usually between only two sides — “He should” vs. “He shouldn’t” — while the important question of “Can he?” goes completely ignored. It often feels as though Article I, Section 8 has been all but forgotten, which is why I was so glad to see the recent comments from Senator Bernie Sanders.

Call to General Strike to Remove Trump/Pence from Office and arrest Hillary Clinton

By Christopher R Rice, Underground Resistance Network

Our silence has been construed as our consent to become beneficiaries of a debt we did not incur.

The promise of a “peace dividend” or a balanced budget has been obliterated by a war with no exit strategy. Only more overruns and war profiteers, whose only success has been to lower the cost of street heroin while increasing its potency.

Read more: Despite 17 years of occupation, Afghanistan’s opium production has only gone up

You are entitled to full disclosure of the facts.

The ‘War on Terror’ has cost US taxpayers $250 million every day for 19 plus years

The U.S. government has spent a staggering $1.46 trillion on wars abroad since September 11, 2001, according to the Department of Defense’s (DoD) periodical “Cost of War” report. As International Business Times reports, this amounts to $250 million a day for 19 years consecutively.

President Trump has opened the floodgates for defense spending, proposing $716 billion for the Pentagon, a 13 percent increase.

Trump administration’s budget calls for a more than 25 percent increase in spending on missiles and munitions.

A White House proposal to spend a massive amount on defense next year is what one lobbyist called an “eye-watering” budget for the defense industry.

Read more: In Trump budget, Lockheed gets almost as much as the State Department

Treasury Department data for the first half of 2018 show individual income tax receipts rose 8.1%, to $915 billion. Corporate income tax receipts fell 32.4%, to $100 billion. The sharp decline in corporate tax revenue is largely a result of the tax cuts President Trump signed into law at the end of 2017, which cut the top corporate rate from 35% to 21%.

Anyone can participate. Planned civil disobedience: General Strike

This strike will continue until Trump/Pence step down and charges are filed against Hillary Clinton. (Read more:  Hillary Clinton Is Living Proof That Crime Pays in Spectacular Ways)

No work
No school
No shopping

Call in sick, take your vacation time. If you can not get out of work, you can participate in the work slow down.

I know that you have bills to pay and this will not be easy for you but we have a choice to make. Either we continue doing what they want, that is going to work, going to school and going shopping while we allow them to have another needless costly war for oil or we say enough is enough, we refuse to go to work, to go to school or to go shopping until all of the troops come home and we end the military industrial complex and finally deliver on the promises of a peace dividend and a balanced budget.

Student Protest:

Students plan to stage walkouts (during classes) all across the country to demand: “Impeach Trump”

This is a non violent civil disobedience direct action. This strike is not meant to hurt the country in any way but to remove those who have. You do not need to be violent to not go to work, to not go to school or not shop. Protest peacefully and lawfully. Find out the laws in your city/state and protest lawfully and legally.

General Strikes – a brief history (with video)

I can not personally organize each protest in each and every city and school. That is up to you. Begin organizing now. Post to your social media accounts and

Link to this site from sites and blogs. Mention it with links in your comments on blogs. We are running out of time.

People take to the streets across the country, day after day, night after night. The Trump/Pence regime must go.

There will be ZERO mainstream media discussion of this strike BEFORE it happens. ZERO.

So, we must BE OUR OWN MEDIA and promote it. Link to this site from sites and blogs. USE LINK:  Mention it with links in your comments on blogs. PROMOTE IT.

It does not matter if you voted Republican, Democrat or not at all, we have a choice and a responsibility to our children.

For this upcoming action to be effective we need to put millions of boots on the ground. No membership required, no dues, no donations or militias to join. Your NON-COMPLIANCE is our only weapon.

Our children deserve their rightful legacy — the liberty our ancestors fought so hard to give to us. Will we remain silent and perpetuate the MYTH? Or, do we stand as One People, and take back what has been stolen from the house of our Republic?


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