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Donald Trump Is Picking Your Pocket

Donald Trump using the presidency to line his pockets is perhaps the most viscerally compelling piece of evidence against him. It is baldly unconstitutional, practically the dictionary definition of corruption, and simply gross.

Trump has constantly funneled the White House budget into his own pockets. (Photo: Illustrated | Jeff J Mitchell - Pool /Getty Images, NATALIIA OMELCHENKO/iStock, javarman3/iStock, KittisakJirasittichai/iStock)

Trump has constantly funneled the White House budget into his own pockets. (Photo: Illustrated | Jeff J Mitchell - Pool /Getty Images, NATALIIA OMELCHENKO/iStock, javarman3/iStock, KittisakJirasittichai/iStock)

President Trump suggested a flagrant violation of the Constitution Monday, at the Group of Seven conference in France. At an appearance with Germany's Angela Merkel, he said the next conference might be held at his Trump National Doral golf resort near Miami. "We haven't found anything that's even close to competing with it. Really you can be there in a matter of minutes after you land," he said.

This is part of a pattern — Trump hasn't just proposed stuffing huge sacks of cash from foreign states and the U.S. government into his own pockets, he's actually done it.This profiteering off the presidency is the simplest reason he should be impeached immediately. He is violating the Constitution and picking the pockets of the American people to enrich himself. It's an open-and-shut case.

As the New York Times details, Trump still owns multiple properties in the U.S. where government officials from China, Georgia, Kuwait, Malaysia, and elsewhere have rented rooms or paid for other services. Indeed, Saudi Arabia owns an entire floor of Trump World Tower in New York City.

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At the same time, Trump has constantly funneled the White House budget into his own pockets. He has stayed at his own hotels on overseas presidential trips, charged the Secret Service through the nose for protecting him at his golf courses, conducted government business at his own properties, and much more. A report from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington way back in January 2018 found over 500 blatant conflicts of interests in the Trump administration.

Meanwhile Trump's supposed efforts to place some distance between himself and his business empire with a trust are risible. His own son runs it, and Trump is the sole beneficiary. A man can't be said to be separate from a business when he alone collects all the profits and continues to loudly advertise it personally. And because Trump has not released his tax returns, we don't even know exactly how much cash Trump is raking in, or from whom.

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Ryan Cooper

Ryan Cooper

Ryan Cooper is a national correspondent at TheWeek.com. His work has appeared in the Washington Monthly, The New Republic, and the Washington Post.

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