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Pardon My Emolument

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One of the talking points House Republicans have been using to argue against impeaching Trump although there’s no serious argument on the merits that Trump is innocent is that some Democrats have been calling for his impeachment since he was inaugurated. Leaving aside that the argument is irrelevant, the additional problem is that Trump is an unprecedentedly corrupt precedent who has in fact been committing impeachable offenses since he was inagurated:

The U.S. Secret Service paid more than $250,000 to President Trump’s private businesses in just the first five months of Trump’s presidency — paying the president’s company an average of nearly $2,000 per day, according to Secret Service records.

Those records, obtained by the group Property of the People after an open-records lawsuit, detail some of the revenue that Trump derives from the U.S. taxpayer.

The president has set up an extraordinary arrangement: he kept ownership of his businesses — and then visited them repeatedly, bringing along aides and security officials and charging the government for what they bought.

Documents released previously had shown $84,000 in federal spending at Trump properties in the first months of Trump’s time in office. These new records, detailing spending on Secret Service credit cards, show another $254,000 by the Secret Service alone.

The Republican defense of Trump basically seems to be that Trump has been engaged in so much wrongdoing that it would be unfair to impeach him over just some of it.

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