Ethics Office Won’t Investigate Trump on Business Earnings

The Office of Government Ethics (OGE) won’t investigate whether President Donald Trump’s business dealings violate a constitutional provision, limiting a president’s income to their official salary.

OGE Director Walter Shaub said in a Monday letter that his office lacks jurisdiction over the issue.

“The emoluments issues are presently under judicial review, and, within the executive branch, are under the sole purview of the Department of Justice,” he wrote, Politico reported on Tuesday.

“OGE has no authority to investigate or order corrective action on the part of the President. Ultimately, under the Constitution, the authority to oversee the President rests with Congress”, Shaub added.

Democratic Senator Patty Murray was reportedly requesting that the OGE examine if benefits Trump gets from federal government dealings with his private businesses conflicts the Constitution’s domestic emoluments clause.

Shaub in March told other congressional members that OGE has no authority to probe Trump over conflict of interest issues or violations of the Constitution’s foreign emoluments clause. The Constitution’s foreign emoluments clause prohibits U.S. officials like Trump from accepting payments from overseas governments.

Shaub was appointed by former President Barack Obama to a five-year term that ends in early 2018.

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