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EDITORIAL: House Democrats continue to rush down the rabbit hole

With the issue of Russian collusion having fallen flat, the Trump Resistance now focuses on a few more Hail Marys they’ve heaved high into the air in their effort to overturn the 2016 presidential election. And Nevada’s own Dina Titus is standing in the end zone hoping to snare one of these desperate deep tosses.

Rep. Titus, who represents Nevada’s 1st Congressional District, a safe Democratic seat, chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on public buildings. As such, she is leading a probe into whether President Donald Trump violated the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause by using the power of his office for his own enrichment. The probe involves — among other things — the Trump International Hotel, which is located in a building owned by the federal government.

“Congress has an important role to play here, and we cannot allow the courts to do our job for us,” Rep. Titus explained. “No one is above the law.”

Well … except, apparently, for those crossing our Southern border illegally. But we digress.

At this point, there has been no evidence that President Donald Trump has cut some nefarious deal to do the bidding of foreign nationals or evil corporate chieftains in exchange for them staying at the Washington hotel that bears his name. But Democrats seek a wider interpretation of the Emoluments Clause than simply a quid pro quo. They allege the president violates the Constitution every time any of his business endeavors receives payments from foreign or government customers without the consent of Congress.

There is a legitimate debate about the scope and breadth of the clause in question. But it’s difficult not to conclude that the real motivation here isn’t to protect the Constitution from a corrupt president but to contort the Emoluments Clause into another blunt instrument with which House Democrats can bludgeon Mr. Trump.

Besides, Rep. Titus’s probe appears premature given that the issue is in the process of being litigated. The results have been a mixed bag so far. Last week, a federal judge denied a Justice Department motion to toss out a lawsuit brought by House Democrats regarding the president and the Emoluments Clause. On Wednesday, however, a federal appeals court shot down a case brought by Resistance attorneys general of Maryland and Washington, D.C., arguing Mr. Trump was in violation of the clause.

Rep. Titus is anything but a quitter, so her investigation will no doubt charge forward. But every minute House Democrats neglect their legislative duties in favor of holding thinly veiled partisan tribunals designed to lay the groundwork for a futile effort to forcibly remove Mr. Trump from the Oval Office, they roll the dice with independent voters.

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