The White House dismissed a lawsuit filed Monday alleging corruption against President Donald Trump as a partisan attack with no legal basis.
“It’s not hard to conclude that partisan politics may be one of the motivations behind the suit,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said during a press conference Monday. “We’ll move to dismiss this case in the normal course of business.”
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, accuses Trump of violating the emoluments clause by maintaining an ownership stake in a business that receives payment from foreign governments. (RELATED: Attorneys General Sue Trump Over His Foreign Business Dealings)
Spicer noted that the recent suit is a repeat of another lawsuit, filed in January by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW). He argued Trump’s business dealings do not violate the Constitution, a claim supported by the Department of Justice in a 70-page brief filed Friday calling for the dismissal of the CREW lawsuit.
He also pointed out the emphasis on publicity evident in the suit’s filing.
“It actually started with a press conference as opposed to filing it, which is interesting,” Spicer said.
Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine, the pair of Democrats who filed the suit, denied that partisanship played a role in their decision to pursue legal action against Trump.
“The president’s conflicts of interest threaten our democracy,” Frosh told journalists at a press conference held to announce the suit. “We cannot treat the president’s ongoing violations of the Constitution and his disregard of the rights of the American people as the new acceptable status quo.”
“We have a duty to enforce the law and that’s why we are taking action today,” Racine added.
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