Saturday, December 4

6 demands Trump will have to face when he leaves office

(CNN) — President Donald Trump will be the old Donald Trump again in 71 days.

And in case you’ve forgotten, there are at least half a dozen ongoing cases involving you, putting you at various levels of legal risk and still pending.

Because there have been SO MANY legal issues surrounding the president throughout his first term, I thought it might make sense to go over the pending litigation involving him and where they are going right now.

1) The Manhattan district attorney’s office investigates the internal financial workings of the Trump Organization

This case, which is being overseen by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., stemmed from questions about various secret money payments made in the run-up to the 2016 election by then-Trump attorney Michael Cohen, to women who alleged they had had extramarital affairs with Trump. (Cohen told Congress, under oath, in 2019 that he had “no doubt” in his mind that Trump knew about the secret money payments.). However, the investigation is broader than the secret money. As Kara Scannell and Erica Orden wrote from CNN last month:

“Prosecutors have suggested in court documents that the investigation could examine whether the president and his company were involved in bank fraud, insurance fraud, criminal tax fraud and falsification of business records.”

Trump has repeatedly tried to block the eight-year prosecutor’s subpoena from his tax returns and financial records as part of the investigation.

Following Cohen’s testimony alleging that Trump, along with members of his family, had “repeatedly inflated his total assets when it served his purposes, such as trying to be among the richest people in Forbes, and deflated his assets to reduce his assets. “Taxes,” New York Attorney General Letitia James announced that she would investigate the claims to see if they escalate to the level of fraud. Just last month, Eric Trump was questioned under oath whether he or the Trump organization were seeking to artificially inflate and deflate its assets.

Judge orders Eric Trump to appear 1:57

3) Attorneys General of Maryland and Washington sued over the emoluments clause

This lawsuit was originally filed in 2017, alleging that Trump was violating the emoluments (or fees) clause of the Constitution by profiting from foreign government spending at his Trump hotel in downtown Washington. (Read more about the clause emoluments here). The case appeared dead until May, when the 4th Circuit overturned a three-judge panel ruling that the plaintiffs had no standing to present the case. Trump appealed the decision to the Supreme Court. (There is also a second case of emoluments that is still pending, is presented by a group of restaurants and a hotel operator).

4) The defamation lawsuit of E. Jean Carroll

Days before the 2020 election, a federal judge rejected an attempt by Trump, represented by Justice Department attorneys, to effectively dismiss a case brought by Carroll alleging that Trump had raped her in the 1990s. He denied his accusation and He said, “She’s not my type.” The case is now progressing through the federal court system.

Woman who accused Trump of sexual abuse asks for his DNA 2:09

5) Summer Zervos defamation lawsuit

Zervos, a former contestant on “The Apprentice,” sued Trump in 2017, arguing that by denying his accusation that he had sexually assaulted her in 2007, he had defamed her and subjected her to harassment. Trump lost an attempt to dismiss the case in late 2019, but procedures, including a possible subpoena for Trump to provide a statement, have been suspended until he leaves office.

Sexual harassment complaints, another terrible Friday for Trump

6) The lawsuit of his niece Mary Trump

The president’s niece, and author of the scathing bestseller “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man,” sued Trump in September, alleging that he, his sister, and his late brother had committed fraud to prevent them from she got her fair share of the inheritance from Trump’s father, Fred Sr.

Oppenheimer: Trump must be transparent 3:28

Aside from those half a dozen lawsuits, there is the question of whether Trump could be charged with obstruction of justice for his attempts to impede and inhibit the investigation of the 2016 elections and Russia’s role in them by special counsel Robert Mueller. In an exchange of views during congressional testimony in July 2019, Mueller, a former FBI director, suggested that he believed that Trump could be indicted once he leaves office.

It’s impossible to know if any of these pending lawsuits will ever emerge as a genuine threat to Trump. Especially when you consider that Trump, for decades, has shown his willingness to use absolutely every legal avenue to protect himself, muddy the waters and slow down procedures.

What is clear, however, is that Trump will have fewer watertight legal protections as a former president than as a sitting president. Much less.

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