As part of a lawsuit accusing President Trump of profiting off his own presidency, the attorneys general of the District of Columbia and Maryland plan to file subpoenas Tuesday for Trump Organization and IRS records.
The lawsuit deals with the alleged violation of the Constitution’s emoluments clause which prohibits any officeholder from receiving any thing of value from a foreign state or its rulers, officers, or representatives. The suit alleges that foreign and domestic government spending at Trump’s Washington, D.C., hotel amounts to gifts to the president, and therefore violates the clause. Subpoenas were also sent to the Department of Defense, General Services Administration, Department of Commerce, and the Department of Agriculture—all of which have spent taxpayer dollars at the hotel.
The subpoenas are an effort to answer three questions: which governments have paid the hotel, where that money went, and how the hotel is affecting other hotels in the region. Additionally, the recovered records could provide the first picture of Trump’s business finances.