Washington (AFP) – Reflecting, the Department of Justice said the Treasury Department must file tax returns to previous President Donald Trump’s Ways and Means Committee, apparently ending a lengthy legal standoff over the records.
In a memo dated Friday, the Office of the Legal Counsel for Justice said the committee chair “has invoked ample grounds to request the previous president’s tax information” and that under federal law, “Treasury must provide the information to the committee.”
The 39-page memo was signed by Dawn Johnsen, who was appointed by the Biden administration as the acting chief of the Office of Legal Counsel.
During the Trump administration, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he would not turn over the tax returns because he concluded they were required by Democrats who control the House of Representatives for partisan reasons.
Access to previous President Trump’s tax returns is a matter of national security. The American people deserve to know the realities of conflicting interests that disturb them and undermine our security and our democracy as president.
The commission sued for the records under a federal law that says the Internal Revenue Service “must submit” the proceeds of any taxpayer to a handful of top lawmakers. The committee said it needed Trump’s taxes to conduct an investigation into whether he complied with tax law.
The Trump Department of Justice defended Mnuchin’s refusal and Trump himself also intervened to try to forbid the materials from being delivered to Congress.
Under a court order issued in January, Trump will have 72 hours to object following the Biden administration formally changed the government’s position on the lawsuit.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. They already obtained copies of Trump’s personal and business tax records as part of an ongoing criminal investigation. Trump tried to forbid his accountants from handling the documents, and took the case to the Supreme Court. The judges rejected Trump’s argument that he enjoys wide immunity as president.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said tax returns remain a focus of lawmakers’ interest.
“Access to previous President Trump’s tax returns is a matter of national security. The American people deserve to know the troubling realities of oppose of interest and undermining our security and democracy as president,” Pelosi said in a statement.
The roots of the problem go back to the 2016 presidential election campaign, when Trump claimed he could not release his taxes due to an IRS scrutiny.