A Washington-based watchdog group that frequently litigates against President Donald Trump may have exaggerated key claims in a high-profile lawsuit alleging that the president is unconstitutionally leveraging the power of his office for profiteering.
National Review Online reports that Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) may have misled a federal court in New York with respect to the professional background of three plaintiffs in their lawsuit, CREW vs. Trump.
The plaintiffs’ professions are an essential aspect to the disposition of the case. Before the court rules on the merits of their suit — which alleges that Trump’s commercial entities profit from business with foreign governments, in violation of the Constitution’s emoluments clause — it must first establish that the plaintiffs have standing. In order to bring a lawsuit, a plaintiff must first establish that the defendant has inflicted a concrete, tangible, and particularized injury against them.
Here the plaintiffs claim that their economic livelihood has been adversely affected by their inability to compete with Trump’s businesses following his election to the presidency. The plaintiffs claim that they are event planners, hoteliers, and restaurant owners who have lost business in recent months, as prospective costumers flock to Trump properties to curry favor with the administration or secure greater exposure.