Individual members of Congress cannot sue President Trump to stop his private businesses from accepting payments from foreign governments, a federal appeals court in Washington ruled Friday.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit unanimously dismissed a lawsuit filed by more than 200 Democrats in Congress seeking to enforce the Constitution’s anti-corruption emoluments provision.

“The Members can, and likely will, continue to use their weighty voices to make their case to the American people, their colleagues in the Congress and the President himself, all of whom are free to engage that argument as they see fit. But we will not—indeed we cannot—participate in this debate,” according to the unsigned order from Judges David S. Tatel, Thomas B. Griffith and Karen LeCraft Henderson.

The 12-page opinion points to past Supreme Court decisions, which the judges said do not permit individual lawmakers to bring lawsuits on behalf of the entire body in part because Congress acts through majority votes in the House and Senate.

Trump business dealings argued at federal appeals court in emoluments case

The rarely tested language at issue in the case bars U.S. officials from accepting payments, benefits or other “emoluments” from foreign governments without consent from Congress. Lawyers for the Democratic lawmakers said Trump is illegally profiting through transactions with foreign governments and officials.

Justice Department lawyers, defending the president, said the ban refers narrowly to compensation in exchange for official action or in an employment-type relationship — and does not broadly include any profit, gain or advantage.

After the court hearing in December, one of the lead plaintiffs in the case, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) rejected the idea that such a lawsuit must come from the entire legislature.

“Individual members of Congress simply cannot do their job,” he said, if there is no legal right or standing to sue.

Trump’s private business interests are back at appeals courts in emoluments cases

The lawsuit is one of three similar cases pending in appeals courts, one step below the Supreme Court, and has the potential to reveal details about the president’s closely held business interests.

The congressional case extends beyond Trump’s luxury hotel in downtown Washington, which he leases from the federal government and where the governments of Kuwait, Malaysia, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and others have paid to hold events or book rooms.

The congressional case reached the D.C. appeals court after Judge Emmet G. Sullivan cleared the way for lawmakers to issue 37 subpoenas seeking financial information, interviews and other records, including ones related to Trump Tower and his Mar-a-Lago Club in South Florida.

But that request went on hold after the appeals court stepped in midstream and intervened — at Trump’s request and with Sullivan’s consent — to consider the untested separation-of-powers issues.

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