Democrats demand Trump tax returns by April 23

Elias Hubbard
April 14, 2019

Neal said that the Committee is "considering legislative proposals and conducting oversight related to our Federal tax laws, including, but not limited to, the extent to which the IRS audits and enforces the Federal tax laws against a President".

He argued that a 1920-era law saying the IRS "shall furnish" any tax return requested by Congress "is unambiguous and raises no complicated legal issues". Later Saturday, Mnuchin accused Democrats of "weaponizing" the IRS. "There are constitutional issues", Mnuchin said.

"With immigrants being less likely to commit crimes than the USA born population, and with sanctuary jurisdictions being safer and more productive than non-sanctuary jurisdictions, the data damns this proposal as a politically motivated stunt that seeks to play politics with peoples' lives", said George Gascon, district attorney for San Francisco.

Mnuchin said he thought Neal was just picking arbitrary deadline and he refused to speculate how the administration would proceed if the issue goes to court.

The increasingly embattled U.S. president has claimed through spokespeople and through his own tweets that his tax returns can not be released because they are "under audit", although no such legal stipulation exists, according to USA tax law, cited by multiple sources. The law states that three people: the House Ways and Means chairman, the head of the Joint Committee on Taxation and the Chairman of Senate Finance can ask for anyone's personal tax information for their committee's use. The agency has said it doesn't have the resources for immigrants processed by the Border Patrol and Border Patrol in most southern border sectors and is now instead releasing families after a health screening and criminal background check, leaving local nonprofits to help them make travel arrangements.

The transportation of migrants arrested at the border to large and faraway cities would be burdensome and costly at a time when Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) is stretched thin, having released over 125,000 migrants pending their immigration court date since 21 December. "If you fail to comply, your failure will be interpreted as a denial of my request". Neal also could seek the returns through a subpoena.

Mnuchin had told Neal this past week that he needs more time to consider the unprecedented demand for Trump's returns and needs to consult with the Justice Department about it. Mnuchin expressed a concern over releasing the returns because of the precedent it would set and the potential for this to be used for political attacks.

On Saturday, Neal said the administration has no right "to question or second guess" his motivations.

In an interview with "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace, Sanders said that Democrats were treading a "dangerous road" and that their request for Trump's tax returns is "all about political partisanship".

Mulvaney asserted that since voters knew ahead of the 2016 election that Trump would not reveal his returns and then elected him anyway, the matter was "already litigated".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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