Lawsuit against Trump now includes China trademarks
A lawsuit alleging President Trump violated the Constitution’s so-called emoluments clause now lists “gratuitous Chinese trademarks” among its examples.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington expanded its complaint against Trump on Tuesday.
“Despite denying Defendant trademark protections for over ten years, including in a ruling from an appellate court, and despite China’s law barring the use of foreign leaders’ names as trademarks, China gave Defendant the trademark he had requested and valued,” the amended complaint reads.
“However, China only gave the trademark protection to Defendant after he had been elected President, questioned the One China policy, was sworn in, and re-affirmed the One China policy.”
The trademarks China has granted to Trump include branded spas, real estate companies, bars, restaurants and escort services.
The Washington-based nonprofit announced in January that it was bringing a suit to “stop President Trump from violating the Constitution by illegally receiving payments from foreign governments.”
The lawsuit alleges Trump is likely violating the emoluments clause when his hotels — including the new Trump Hotel in Washington, D.C. — and restaurants do business with representatives of foreign governments.
The reach of the emoluments clause has been a subject of fierce public debate since Trump won the White House, given his vast business holdings.
The clause, aimed at curbing corruption, states that “no person holding any office of profit or trust under them shall, without the consent of the congress, accept of any present, emolument, office or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.”
The plaintiffs involved have asked Judge Ronnie Abrams in New York to order Trump to stop violating the clause and release financial records proving he has done so.
Reports emerged Tuesday that China approved three new trademarks for a brand owed by Trump’s daughter Ivanka after she met Chinese President Xi Jinping earlier this month.
Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, sat next to Xi during his April 6 visit to President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla.