The U.S. Supreme Court issued an unsigned order Tuesday denying a Donald Trump request to withhold tax returns from Congress. The order vacated a temporary stay issued earlier this month by Chief Justice John Roberts.
It is unclear what purpose House Democrats believe obtaining the former president’s tax returns would achieve in the lame duck session. Republicans gained a House majority in the midterm election and will end the Ways and Means Committee’s pursuit of Trump’s tax records.
The Conservative Brief further reported:
“The denial allows Trump’s tax returns to be released to the House Ways and Means Committee, which has been attempting for years to obtain them from the Internal Revenue Service as part of its investigation into the service’s presidential audit program. Tuesday’s order, which was unsigned and included no dissent, vacates a temporary hold Chief Justice John Roberts placed on the documents earlier this month,” Axios reported.
“Trump, who has been fighting for years to block the release of his tax returns, requested the high court weigh in after a federal appeals court also declined one of his requests to block the release of the documents. Lawyers for Trump have argued that the committee does not have a legitimate legislative purpose for the documents and seeks only to publish them. The Department of Justice under the Biden administration argued in a 2021 opinion that the committee’s request was legitimate and the Trump-era Treasury Department had no valid reason to refuse it,” the outlet added.
However, the dynamic has changed given Republicans narrowly won control of the U.S. House in the next Congress.
That means that Republicans can — and will likely — scrap the Ways and Means Committee’s investigation.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi released a statement on the decision, saying: “The House looks forward to promptly receiving and reviewing these documents. These documents are vital to meeting the House’s Constitutional mandate: guarding the public interest, defending our national security, and holding our public officials to account. Congress must enact legislation requiring Presidents and candidates for President to disclose their tax returns.”
Earlier this month, Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts ruled in favor of Trump in his appeal to keep his tax returns from Congress.
“Chief Justice John Roberts agreed to temporarily put on hold a lower court order requiring the release of former President Donald Trump’s tax returns by the Internal Revenue Service to a Democratic-led House committee,” CNN reported.
Democrats have been fighting to get Trump’s tax returns for years.
Last December, a federal judge rejected Trump’s lawsuit to shield his tax returns from congressional Democrats.
U.S. District Court Judge Trevor McFadden, a Trump appointee, dismissed the case, citing Supreme Court precedent. McFadden said Trump was “wrong on the law” and that Congress is due “great deference” in its inquiries.
“Even the special solicitude accorded former Presidents does not alter the outcome,” McFadden wrote in a 45-page ruling. “The Court will therefore dismiss this case. Even if the former President is right on the facts, he is wrong on the law,” McFadden said. “A long line of Supreme Court cases requires great deference to facially valid congressional inquiries.”
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.