Donald Trump’s tax returns: Former president asks Supreme Court to block House committee from accessing tax returns
Washington – Former President Donald Trump takes his fight to protect his many yearsto the Supreme Court, filing an emergency petition Monday with the high court in an attempt to stop the pending disclosure.
“This case raises important questions about the separation of powers that will affect any future president,” Trump’s legal team wrote. “The Committee’s purpose in requesting President Trump’s tax returns has nothing to do with funding or staffing issues at the IRS and everything to do with releasing the president’s tax information to the public”.
Last week, the full federal appeals court in Washington, DC rejected a request by the former president to reconsider the decision of a three-judge appeals court against him.
The DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled — apparently without dissenting votes — that Trump’s case against the House Ways and Means Committee should not be heard. on the bench and that the decision to allow disclosure of his tax records to the committee should not be put on hold pending further litigation.
Earlier this year, the three-judge panel in the DC appeals courtthe committee was entitled to obtain several years of Trump’s tax returns, rejecting the former president’s claims that many of the committee’s requests for records were unconstitutional and lacked a valid legislative purpose.
“While it is possible that Congress may try to threaten the sitting president with an invasive demand after he leaves office, every president takes office knowing that he will be subject to the same laws as all other citizens after the mandate,” the judges wrote in August. , “This is a feature of our democratic republic, not a bug.”
In his submission to the Supreme Court on Monday, Trump argued that the questions in question are still unresolved and require consideration by the High Court. “No Congress has ever exercised its legislative powers to require the president’s tax return,” wrote his lawyers, “Left without review, the decision of the DC Circuit will have far-reaching implications. It will set an important precedent (but wrong) for the political branches. moving forward, mandatory in the circuit in which most of the conflicts about the requests of the Congress for the information must be litigated.”
The dispute began after the chairman of the committee Rep. Richard Neal, Democrat of Massachusetts, demanded that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) hand over five years of Trump’s tax records in 2019. The Treasury Department, at the time under Trump’s control, refused to comply . the request despite a process by which Congress can request the tax document of certain individuals from the IRS.
A lawsuit filed by Neal and the Ways and Means Committee followed, as did a transition in presidential power and a renewed request for tax documents in 2021.
Last year, a federal judgeagainst the committee, the first in a series of legal losses for the former president as he fights to protect his tax records from Congress.
“A long line of Supreme Court cases requires great deference to face-validated congressional inquiry,” wrote Justice Trevor McFadden – a Trump appointee – in 2021. “Even the special solicitude accorded to the former Presidents does not change the result. The Court therefore dismissed this. case.”
Trump asked the court on Monday to pause the transfer of his financial records from the IRS to the committee pending further legal review.
The legal battle with the Ways and Means Committee is not the former president’s first attempt to shield his financial records from congressional review. In 2019, the House Oversight Committee subpoenaed Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars, for several years of financial documents. A long legal battle The New York Times.end in an agreement reached between Trump and the Committee . Mazars started returning the documents in September, according to him
Melissa Quinn contributed to this report.
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