Ethics attorneys Richard Painter, Chief Ethics Counsel for George W. Bush, and Norman Eisen, Chief Ethics Counsel for Barack Obama, have both taken the position that if Donald Trump does not sell his businesses and place his assets into a blind trust by December 19, the electors of the electoral college MUST REJECT HIM because he will be in violation of Article 1, Section 9 of the Constitution from Day One of his Presidency.
Harvard Law Professor Larry Tribe, a scholar in constitutional law, agrees with those ethics attorneys and has stated that “Trump’s ongoing business dealings around the world would make him the recipient of constitutionally prohibited ‘Emoluments’ from ‘any King, Prince, or foreign State’ — in the original sense of payments and not necessarily presents or gifts — from the very moment he takes the oath.” One of the main purposes of the electoral college is to assure that a qualified person sits as President. In other words, the electors are not there to simply rubber-stamp a candidate. Tribe stated ““[T]o vote for Trump in the absence of such complete divestment… would represent an abdication of the solemn duties of the 538 Electors.” Read the entire article here:
Up to now, those who are fighting against a Trump Presidency have been asking electors to honor the will of the majority of Americans and vote for Clinton or to vote for what is “right”. This legal conclusion regarding the applicability of Article 1, Sec. 9 of the Constitution, however, changes everything. There is an ENORMOUS difference between a Constitutional provision that requires electors to reject Trump as President and asking them to vote their conscience or with the popular vote.
The Founding Fathers created the Electoral College because “[T]hey feared a tyrant could manipulate public opinion and come to power [and they] believed that the electors would be able to insure that only a qualified person becomes President. They believed that with the Electoral College no one would be able to manipulate the citizenry. It would act as check on an electorate that might be duped.” March Schulman at HistoryCentral (an educational site that has been online for over 20 years) explaining Hamilton’s Federalist papers.
Donald Trump is EXACTLY the kind of person who the Founding Fathers sought to protect us from – a tyrant who manipulated public opinion, possibly in collusion with Russia, to gain power and who is absolutely unqualified to sit as President. If that was not clear to some prior to the election, it is absolutely clear now.
- Russia’s interference with the Presidential election for the purpose of getting Trump elected has been established. Yet, despite the evidence, Trump continues to deny Russian involvement. That, alone, should invalidate Trump’s win.
- His selection of cabinet members and those who will be in charge of some of the most important agencies of the government is frightening and clearly not in the best interests of the people. Steven Bannon, alt-right promoter and supporter, as Chief Strategist, Mike Pompeo, Tea Party Member, for CIA Director, Michael Flynn, who has promoted fake conspiracy theories and has ties to Russia, for National Security Director, – just these three would be disturbing enough but it doesn’t stop there. Mitch McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, to head the Department of Transportation, Scott Pruitt, climate change denier, to head the EPA, Jeff Sessions, denied a federal judgeship for racist remarks, as Attorney General, Ben Carson, who admitted that he has no experience in running a federal agency, as head of Housing and Urban Development.
- He has refused to attend daily intelligence hearings but has time for his “thank you” tours where his massive ego is stroked by his supporters.
- He has already caused an international incident with China.
- He has essentially bribed an American company, Carrier, with a $7 Million tax break to keep some jobs in the United States and then lied about the number of jobs that he “saved” which sets a precedent for other companies, including his own, to receive the same sort of monetary incentive, with taxpayers footing the bill.
- The KKK and other white supremacists consider his win a “dream come true”
- He continues to refuse to reveal his tax returns and and will not set up a true blind trust. In light of his hundreds of business interests globally, this presents serious conflicts of interests questions.
Will Trump’s decisions as President be made to benefit America or his own personal interests or the interests of his children? Will our nation end up partnering with anti-democratic governments simply because Trump wants to expand his businesses or because he owes them a debt (such as his Presidential win)? Will our nation end up declaring war if one of his hotels or properties in a foreign land becomes a target of anti-capitalist groups and terrorists? Will the U.S. lose its allies and worldwide credibility which will affect our economy and safety? Is he in collusion with or controlled by Putin or other Russian interests? These are NOT questions that we should have to ask ourselves about the President of the United States.
WHAT MORE WILL IT TAKE TO CONVINCE ELECTORS THAT THEY CANNOT VOTE FOR THIS MAN? AND IF THEY WILL NOT ACT ON THEIR OWN TO HONOR THEIR DUTY AND PROTECT THIS NATION AND ITS CITIZENS, THEN CITIZENS AND APPROPRIATE ORGANIZATIONS SHOULD SUE, ON CONSTITUTIONAL GROUNDS, FOR AN INJUNCTION TO PREVENT THEM FROM CASTING THEIR VOTES FOR DONALD TRUMP.
There are some electors who are willing to be “faithless electors” – a term with a bad connotation. HOWEVER, some of these electors are planning on voting for a third party candidate. THIS WOULD BE A MISTAKE, a waste of their vote, and would most likely result in Trump becoming President. Why? Because if neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump receives the requisite 270 votes to secure the Presidency, the matter goes before the House of Representatives. The House will then cast their vote for one of the top three candidates. Yes, the same House of Representatives filled with Republicans who were not strong enough to fight Trump or who actually support him and would rather the nation be controlled by a corrupt demagogue instead of by Clinton or any other Democrat.
Other people seem willing to wait for Trump to be impeached, believing that it is inevitable. However, an impeachment does not guarantee removal of Trump from office. The House of Representatives, once again, has the power to impeach the President which is tantamount to an indictment. The Senate has the power to place the impeached person on trial. With both the House and Senate under GOP control, it is doubtful that Trump would be removed. Even if he is removed, his despicable and frightening cabinet members and appointees to federal agencies would remain in power.
The other thing to keep in mind is that under Article 1, Section 9 of the Constitution, Congress can vote to approve of any gifts or payments received by the President. A Republican controlled Congress will most likely do just that.
THERE IS NO QUESTION: Trump must be stopped now, before he takes the oath in January.