WASHINGTON (AFP) – US Democratic lawmakers announced an investigation Wednesday into Donald Trump’s offer to host next year’s G7 summit at one of his golf resorts, calling it the latest sign of presidential “corruption.”
The US leader prompted concerns about potential conflicts of interest by touting his Trump National Doral Miami club as the perfect site for the high-profile gathering of leaders of the Group of Seven advanced economies.
House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler and Steve Cohen, who heads a constitutional subcommittee, said Trump’s financial interests were “clearly shaping decisions about official US government activities.”
It is just the sort of risk that the US Constitution sought to address via its provisions on prohibiting a president from personally profiting from foreign governments, they added.
Trump’s proposal, they said, was “only the latest in a troubling pattern of corruption and self-dealing by the president.”
They said hosting the G7 at Doral would violate both the foreign and domestic emoluments clauses that are designed to shield a commander in chief from outside influence.
“More importantly, the Doral decision reflects perhaps the first publicly known instance in which foreign governments would be required to pay President Trump’s private businesses in order to conduct business with the United States,” they said.
Nadler’s committee and other panels are already investigating Trump on a number of fronts as they examine allegations, including abuses of power.