Treasury rejects Democrats’ demand for Trump’s tax returns

Treasury rejects Democrats’ demand for Trump’s tax returns

Treasury rejects Democrats’ demand for Trump’s tax returns

"The department respects congressional oversight, and we intend to review your request carefully", Mnuchin wrote in a letter to Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal of MA.

"The Committee's request raises serious issues concerning the constitutional scope of Congressional investigative authority, the legitimacy of the asserted legislative objective, and the constitutional rights of American citizens", Mnuchin said in the letter. The law says that if he wants the taxes, he should get them.

Neal, Massachusetts Democrat, set a Wednesday deadline for the IRS to respond, as party lines harden over the request that would give Congress an inside look into Trump's finances and business practices.

Mnuchin threatened to never return voluntarily before Waters' committee because he said other treasury secretaries were never treated that way by previous chairs.

"Congress, as a coequal branch of government, has a duty to conduct oversight of departments and officials", Neal said when he requested the tax returns.

Despite touting the idea of a "signing summit" at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida a month ago, Trump said last week there are no guarantees the two will meet. The practice of presidential candidates making tax returns public, which Trump promised to uphold and then broke, started after Nixon as an anti-corruption measure. Mnuchin tries to interrupt her and she tells him, "Please cancel your meeting and respect our time". "House Democrats' unprecedented request has serious implications for all Americans and requires serious, careful analysis". The IRS says there's no rule against subjects of an audit from publicly releasing their tax filings.

The president has told those close to him that the attempt to get his returns amounted to an invasion of his privacy and was a further example of the Democratic-led "witch hunt" - which he has called special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation - meant to damage him.

Neal requested the returns on the basis that he wants to review the procedure for the routine audits of presidents. Mr. Trump's lawyer in the matter, Will Consovoy, also asked the IRS not to hand over the president's tax returns until it receives a legal opinion from the Justice Department. "That's where the real action is - in those federal forms - but even then, they are going to be probably a little too summary to answer some of the questions".

Technically, there's nothing preventing Trump from releasing his tax returns now. "The timing is yet to be determined, we're looking at what the precise steps would be", said Democrat Dan Kildee, a committee member and chief deputy whip of the Democratic Caucus".

"The requests for [Trump's] private tax information are not consistent with governing law, do not advance any proper legislative objective, and threaten to interfere with the ordinary conduct of audits", said William S. Consovoy, Trump's attorney, in a statement.

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