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International Journal of Applied Philosophy

Volume 31, Issue 1, Spring 2017

Fritz Allhoff, Jonathan Milgrim
Pages 45-67

Conflicts of Interest, Emoluments, and the Presidency

The past presidential election reinvigorated interest in the applicability of conflict of interest legislation to the executive branch. In § 2, we survey various approaches to conflicts of interest, paying particular attention to 18 U.S.C. § 208. Under 18 U.S.C. § 202, this conflict of interest statute is straightforwardly inapplicable to the President. We then explore the normative foundations of such an exemption in § 3. While these sections are ultimately lenient, we go on to consider the Emoluments Clause of the United States Constitution in § 4. In §§ 5–6, we apply the Emoluments Clause to the presidency, arguing that it complements conflict-of-interest regimes with regards to foreign affairs, but with more substantial restrictions.

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