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  1. Opinion

The ‘emoluments clause’ exists for exactly this reason.

Monday’s letters to the editor
The White House says it has chosen President Donald Trump's golf resort in Miami as the site for next year's Group of Seven summit. (AP Photo/Alex Sanz, File) [ALEX SANZ | AP]
Published Oct. 20

Trump awards next G-7 summit to his own Florida resort | Oct. 18

Congress needs to stop this now

The framers of the Constitution did not want people benefiting personally from their offices. For the latter, they established the “emoluments clause.” This clause is why other presidents have released their tax returns, so that the American public can see where their money is coming from and Congress can make sure they are not personally benefiting. This president has refused to do so. It is also why every other president has divested themselves of their business or put it in a blind trust. This prevents them from being susceptible to influence. This president has refused to do that. He has, allegedly, turned over the running of his hotels and golf resorts to his children, but he still keeps a close eye on them. Now he is being so bold as to declare that the next G7 meeting will be held at his Miami resort. This is a violation of the emoluments clause. Congress needs to do its job and check the actions of this president. He is violating his oath of office.

Jenni Casale, Palmetto

Climate change

Sunny day floods in St. Pete

Shore Acres in St. Petersburg has been experiencing “sunshine flooding” for the past month, and nobody is talking about it. I have lived in my current Shore Acres home for 37 years and have never experienced this condition — save a couple of high tide/south wind conditions. For the past month we have had salt water in the streets without having tides exceeding 2.8 above mean tide and without any south winds above 15 knots. In my years living on a canal in Shore Acres, the average tides have increased by more than a foot, but this current “sunshine flooding” condition is more than unsettling for the future of St. Petersburg’s waterfront homes and nearby residents.

William Henzler, St. Petersburg

Repairing criminal justice | Column, Oct. 17

Don’t punish the poor

Thank you for Aswad Thomas’ thoughtful column. It would be a great benefit to our community if supervised probation was prohibited for non-violent misdemeanors. In the past, it was not uncommon to see a misdemeanor defendant who wrote a bad check for $25 assigned to supervised probation for six months or more. Probation fees are high and have to be paid monthly. How is it helping anyone to overload the courts and probation services with these offenders? Why does a rich society need to be so punitive to a defendant so poor he had to write a bad check for $25? If they keep messing up, they can go to jail. Supervised probation is expensive and useless.

Renee Campion, Tampa

Emissions tests needed in Florida | Letter, Oct. 11

Inspect and test our cars

Not only do we need emission tests, but we also need vehicle safety tests. I’m retired military and have resided in many states, all of which required safety inspections and, later, emission control inspections. There are too many cars on our roads that have tail lights or directional lights not working, cracked windshields, improper setting of headlights, etc. No wonder our insurance rates are so high. Let’s bring Florida into the 21st century and establish required safety and emission control inspections at least bi-annually and when a used car is purchased. Let’s get the junks off the road.

Therese Duncan, Hudson


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