The attorneys general of Maryland and Washington, D.C., said Monday they will seek President Trump's tax returns in a lawsuit over foreign payments to his D.C.-based hotel.


The suit, filed in the U.S. district court for Maryland, alleges Trump has violated both the foreign and domestic emoluments clauses by maintaining a financial stake the D.C. hotel. The complaint cites multiple cases of foreign diplomats and business executives staying in or holding events at the Trump hotel to curry favor with the president.

Trump refused to divest from his business empire before taking office, instead claiming his stake in the Trump Organization would be managed by a blind trust. However, that trust is managed in part by his sons Donald Jr. and Eric, who said they brief the president on his company's profits.


Maryland and D.C.'s case is not the first to challenge Trump under the emoluments clause, but theirs features a unique jurisdictional issue that could help them achieve standing during a trial.

Both the state and district claim Trump's presidency "tilts the competitive playing field toward his business," and away from competing local hotels and restaurants.

Maryland also cites a potential loss in tax revenue from patrons who could skip over its new MGM National Harbor hotel and casino, just across the Potomac River from D.C.

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