The Supreme Court on Monday brought an end to lawsuits over whether Donald Trump illegally profited off his presidency.
The justices threw out lower court rulings as well as Trump’s challenge to them and directed appeals courts in New York and Richmond, Virginia, to dismiss the suits as moot now that Trump is no longer in office.
The lawsuits claimed Trump violated the Constitution’s emoluments clause by accepting payments from foreign and domestic officials who stayed at the Trump International Hotel and patronized other businesses owned by the former president and his family.
The cases involved suits filed by Maryland and the District of Columbia, as well as high-end restaurants and hotels in New York and Washington that claimed they “found themselves in the unenviable position of having to compete with businesses owned by the President of the United States.”
The suits sought financial records showing how much state and foreign governments have paid the Trump Organization to stay and eat at Trump-owned properties.
The Supreme Court’s outcome leaves no judicial opinions on the books in an area of the law that has been rarely explored in U.S. history.
Other cases involving Trump remain before the Supreme Court or in lower courts.
Trump is trying to block the Manhattan district attorney’s enforcement of a subpoena for his tax returns.Lower courts are weighing congressional subpoenas for Trump’s financial records.
The justices also have before them Trump’s appeal of a decision forbidding him from blocking critics on his Twitter account.
Like the emoluments cases, his appeal would seem to be moot now that he is out of office and Twitter has permanently suspended his account.