Supreme Court Rules NY Prosecutor Has Right to Trump’s Returns, But Allows President to Go On Hiding Them from Congress For Now
The Supreme Court today affirmed Congress’s right in its oversight capacity to access the tax returns and other financial records of President Trump, but laid out conditions that it said had not yet been met in the cases under review, delaying the disclosure of the information.
Separately, the Court positively affirmed that local law enforcement has a right to that Trump data and effectively ordered it be released to the Manhattan district attorney. Trump is the first president or major presidential candidate in 40 years to fail to release any portion of his returns, despite his repeated promise that he would.
In a 7-2 decision, the Court sent the issue of Congressional access back to the lower courts to decide, based on several tests laid out by the High Court meant to balance the relative obligations and privileges of the executive and legislative branches. For now it means an accountant as well as several banks serving the President can continue to ignore subpoenas from three Congressional panels demanding Trump financial data, including the House Intelligence Committee, which is investigating Trump’s possibly compromising foreign ties.
In a separate case, the Court ordered by the same 7-2 division of justices that the president’s accounting firm comply with a subpoena issued by a New York City prosecutor seeking financial information on Trump, his family and their many businesses.
“The Court was right to side with law enforcement over legal obstruction, but wrong not to immediately afford the same priority to Congressional oversight,” declared Frank Clemente, executive director of Americans for Tax Fairness, which last year issued a report outlining the case for making Trump’s tax returns public. “Congress has the duty and the American people have the right to know if the president pays his taxes; whether he derives private gain from his public policies; and whether he has foreign business entanglements that conflict with his official duties or even threaten national security.”
Per the SCOTUS blog, the three cases are:
Trump v. Mazars USA, LLP: Whether the Committee on Oversight and Reform of the U.S. House of Representatives has the constitutional and statutory authority to issue a subpoena to the accountant for President Trump and several of his business entities demanding private financial records belonging to the president.
Trump v. Deutsche Bank AG: Whether the Committee on Financial Services and the Intelligence Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives have the constitutional and statutory authority to issue a subpoena to creditors for President Donald Trump and several of his business entities demanding private financial records belonging to the president.
Trump v. Vance: Whether a grand-jury subpoena served on a custodian of the president’s personal records, demanding production of nearly 10 years’ worth of the president’s financial papers and his tax returns, violates Article II and the Supremacy Clause of the Constitution.