Donald Trump will violate the Constitution on the day he takes the oath of office, a Harvard law professor has claimed. Writing in The Guardian, Laurence H. Tribe claims that Trump is clearly in violation of the Emoluments Clause and must act to prevent further violations.
“When Donald Trump swears at the inauguration that he will ‘faithfully execute the office of president of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the United States’, he will be committing a violation of constitutional magnitude,” Tribe writes.
Tribe, who is a professor of constitutional law at Harvard Law School, believes that Trump’s failure to divest himself of his business interests means he will violate the Constitution when he swears to uphold it and will contine to violate it while in office.
The Emoluments Clause forbids presidents from profiting from foreign powers, something Trump’s businesses do in abundance. Trump has said he will no longer run his business but his continued ownership of the Trump Organisation means he will earn money from foreign governments while president.
Professor Tribe also says that Trump’s plan to put his children in charge of his businesses is not enough. He believes it is impossible that Trump would never discuss policies with his children and their potential effect on the Trump Organisation’s bottom line.
Tribe’s article suggests that members of the electoral college would be right to deny the Oval Office to the president-elect because Trump will swear to uphold the Constitution while violating it. Tribe argues that Congress could impeach Trump if he fails to meet the Constitution’s standards after January 20.
“It [Congress] would be well within its rights to impeach and remove him for engaging in ‘high crimes and misdemeanors'” Tribe says.