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00:00:00
>> The Attorneys General of Maryland and the District of Columbia filing a lawsuit Monday, alleging foreign payments to President Donald Trump's businesses violate the US Constitution.>> It's unprecedented that the American people must question, day after day, whether decisions are made and actions are taken to benefit the United States or to benefit Donald Trump.
00:00:23
>> It's a first government action, taking on foreign payments to the President. Reuters legal correspondent, Dan Levine.>> So the lawsuit is about the constitutional violations, but they say that they have the ability to file it because they're being harmed. Both the district and Maryland subsidize convention centers, they promote tourism, and through that, they get tax revenue.
00:00:47
And so they argue that by losing business to Trump's hotels, they're being specifically harmed.>> This comes after the US Department of Justice called for the dismissal of a similar lawsuit filed in January that said Trump is violating the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution by maintaining ownership over his business empire, despite ceding day-to-day control to his sons.
00:01:09
The DOJ Friday argued those plaintiffs lack the legal standing to sue. The Attorneys General in DC and Maryland say they're uniquely qualified to bring a suit. And if it goes forward, it could have a huge political and financial impact on Trump.>> Ultimately, the plaintiffs want a court ruling saying that the payments to Trump's hotels are a violation of the Constitution and, perhaps, some sort of order making him divest more fully.
00:01:35
But even before that, if the plaintiffs get past early procedural attempts to throw out the lawsuit, they could get into discovery. And through that they might be able to get copies of Trump's tax returns or other business information about Trump, which Democrat-elected officials believe may be politically damaging to him.