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END OF THE ROAD: Supreme Court gives Congress its holy grail — Trump’s taxes

END OF THE ROAD: Supreme Court gives Congress its holy grail — Trump’s taxes

END OF THE ROAD: Supreme Court gives Congress its holy grail — Trump's taxes

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Donald Trump’s last-ditch attempt to keep his tax returns out of Congress’s hands has been rejected by the Supreme Court. The court’s decision means the House Ways and Means Committee may finally get its hands on six years of returns requested by Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA).

Coming less than two weeks after the midterm election set Republicans in position to retake the House – creating a sense of urgency for the Democratic-controlled committee.

Filing the request under a law requiring the Internal Revenue Service to comply with any request for tax records from the committee chairperson – as long as it’s in writing – the Committee was stonewalled by Trump’s Treasury Department, with Secretary Steve Mnuchin rejecting the congressman’s request and accusing the panel of “playing politics.” Neal re-submitted his request after the ex-President was voted out of office in 2020.

For three years, the Ways and Means Committee has been in a legal battle with the former President — one that has already resulted in multiple courtroom losses. Trump-appointed U.S. District Judge Trevor McFadden dismissed Trump’s plea to block the release nearly a year ago, and a Washington, D.C. appeals court unanimously upheld McFadden’s ruling.

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Trump’s legal team argued a violation of the separation of powers between the branches of government if their client was made to turn over his tax returns.

“No prior Congress has used its legislative power to obtain and expose the private financial information of a president,” his team argued, The Los Angeles Times reported.

The attorneys went on to claim that Congress doesn’t have enough time to “properly” review the documents with only a few days left in the legislative session.

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“Though a few days is enough time to improperly expose the most sensitive documents of its chief political rival, it’s not enough time to properly study, draft, debate, or pass legislation,” they claimed.

While yes, Trump’s counsel is correct – this is the first time Congress has had to take a president to court to gain access to their returns. That’s because Donald Trump is the first President in nearly 50 years who has refused to do so.

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The IRS supposedly conducts detailed and thorough audits of the commander-in-chief’s returns, but Congress was skeptical of whether the agency delved deep into Trump’s complicated business records.

“Unlike his predecessors, Mr. Trump owned a complex web of businesses, engaged in business activities internationally and had a history of aggressive tax avoidance (as he has boasted),” House lawyers told the court.

The Supreme Court has spoken, and once again showed ex-President Trump the door.

With that out of the way, the next roadblock will be the upcoming legislative session when the GOP assumes the majority.

Whether the committee’s investigation will be tabled, no one knows for sure. One thing is certain, with King Squish McCarthy as a speaker, expect nothing short of chaos.

Original reporting by David G. Savage at The Los Angeles Times

Follow Ty Ross on Twitter @cooltxchick

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Ty Ross
News journalist for Occupy Democrats.

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