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Democrats win huge emoluments clause Trump violations suit

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Congressional Democrats are being allowed to forge ahead with their emoluments case against Trump after a federal ruling landed in their favor Tuesday. Democrats are expected to now begin obtaining financial records from the Trump Organization.

The Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan denied a request from Justice Department lawyers to pause the case to allow an immediate appeal to a higher court in a setback for the president. The Justice Department said it would make an emergency plea directly to an appeals court in Washington, a long-shot legal tactic that is rarely granted in ordinary litigation.

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The closely watched case, brought by nearly 200 House and Senate Democrats, is one of several novel challenges that allege Trump’s ownership of private companies that accept foreign-government business may violate the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution.

“If the President succeeds in running out the clock, an entire presidential term will have gone by with the nation’s highest officeholder making countless foreign policy decisions under a cloud of potentially divided loyalty and compromised judgment caused by his enrichment from foreign states. That is precisely the nightmare scenario the Framers adopted the Foreign Emoluments Clause to avoid,” the members of Congress wrote in a previous court filing

“This case will be poised for resolution within six months; an immediate appeal would hardly materially advance its ultimate termination,” Sullivan noted in the 12-page ruling.

Game on.

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WATCH: Ben Carson thanks God for Trump in bizarre prayer — and then asks Him to ‘Keep America Great’

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Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson on Monday opened up the White House cabinet meeting with a bizarre prayer that explicitly thanked God for the existence of President Donald Trump.

Carson began his prayer with a standard invocation thanking God for "the blessings that you have bestowed upon this country."

After that, though, Carson gave God a thumbs-up for the work He's done in putting Trump in the White House.

"We thank You for President Trump, who also exhibits great courage in face of constant criticism," Carson said. "We ask you give him strength to endure and wisdom to lead and to recognize you as the sovereign of the universe, with the solution to everything."

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Bill Barr sparks anxiety within the CIA as he investigates ‘origins’ of Mueller’s Russia probe: security analyst

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As the Justice Department, headed by Attorney General William Barr, investigates the origins of the Russia investigation, some CIA operatives who played a role in gathering intelligence for Robert Mueller's probe are hiring lawyers, according to NBC News national security reporter Ken Dilanian.

According to various reports, President Trump has granted Barr with "expansive powers" for the investigation and he's reportedly seeking to question CIA analysts.

Speaking to MSNBC's Morning Joe this Monday, Dilanian said that while it's not clear what Barr's intentions are, many in the CIA are "very rattled" at the news.

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White House personnel chief delivers a new blow to Trump: Top DHS candidates are not legally qualified

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President Donald Trump's quest to find an acting replacement for departed Department of Homeland Security chief Kirstjen Nielsen was dealt a significant blow on Monday.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the White House personnel office chief Sean Doocey has informed the president that he doesn't believe either of his top two picks are legally qualified to hold the position.

As the Journal notes, "federal statute that governs vacancies states that acting officials in cabinet-level positions must either be next in line for a position or hold a Senate-confirmed position." Neither Ken Cuccinelli, who heads the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, nor Mark Morgan, who leads Customs and Border Protection, meet those standards, Doocey determined.

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