Politics: Mnuchin says he'll protect Trump privacy if tax returns are requested - PressFrom - US

PoliticsMnuchin says he'll protect Trump privacy if tax returns are requested

20:05  14 march  2019
20:05  14 march  2019 Source:   nbcnews.com

House Democrats likely to seek 10 years of Trump’s tax returns in coming weeks

House Democrats likely to seek 10 years of Trump’s tax returns in coming weeks Ways and Means Democrats and House attorneys anticipate a court fight over access to the president’s tax records.

Trump said Wednesday that he would hand over his tax returns if he weren’t being audited ― an excuse Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin would review any such request with department lawyers “for legality But, he added, “there’s no telling what this president will do, whether he ’ ll flout the law.”

tax returns related to Trump ’s many business enterprises in addition to his personal returns . to give Mnuchin much flexibility to deny a congressional request —it says he “shall” turn over the As Newt Gingrich said in October, that’s when “we’ ll see whether or not the Kavanaugh fight was worth it.”

Mnuchin says he'll protect Trump privacy if tax returns are requested© Jim Watson Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin arrives to testify on President Trump's budget plan before the House Ways and Means Committee on March 14, 2019.

WASHINGTON — Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin suggested Thursday he will protect President Donald Trump's privacy if he receives a request from House Democrats for Trump's tax returns.

At a House Ways and Means Committee hearing, Mnuchin was asked whether he would meet a request for Trump's past tax returns. Chairman Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., is expected to formally ask for those as Democrats seek to shed light on Trump's financial dealings and potential conflicts of interest.

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How can House Democrats get Trump ’s tax returns even if he refuses to release them? A 1924 law allows the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee to examine anyone’s tax returns in private , without their permission, and the likely incoming chairman, Massachusetts Democrat Richard

Mnuchin : Trump has no intention to release his tax returns 2:27 PM ET Wed, 26 April 2017 | 02:36. When he was asked on April 17 specifically if Trump will ever make his tax returns public, Spicer said , "We' ll have to get back to you Privacy Policy. © 2019 CNBC LLC. All Rights Reserved.

"We will examine the request and we will follow the law ... and we will protect the president as we would protect any taxpayer" regarding their right to privacy, Mnuchin said.

Neal is one of only three congressional officials authorized under a rarely used 1924 law to make a written request for anyone's tax returns to the Treasury secretary. The law says the Treasury chief "shall furnish" the requested material to members of the committee for them to examine behind closed doors. But Mnuchin did not specifically say he would turn them over.

The unprecedented move likely would set off a huge legal battle between Trump's administration and Democrats controlling the House. The fight could take years to resolve, possibly stretching beyond the 2020 presidential election.

Grassley says he wants Trump’s tax returns when House gets them

Grassley says he wants Trump’s tax returns when House gets them New IRS regulations issued Monday make it easier for companies to claim a tax break for exporting their made-in-America goods and services.

The tax returns the president doesn’t want anyone to see are within reach. According to MSNBC’s Ari Melber, the ranking Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, Richard Neal, has already said he intends to request Trump ’s returns as soon as he takes control of the committee.

If Neal formally requests Trump ’s tax returns , the request would go to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin . The law stipulates that Mnuchin “shall” turn over the tax returns and doesn’t appear to give him much flexibility. It also doesn’t appear to give the White House the power to intervene.

Neal could move in coming weeks to ask for the documents. "It's happening and it's coming, so be prepared," Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., told Mnuchin at the hearing.

Democrats say that seeking Trump's tax documents falls within their mandate of congressional oversight; Republicans accuse the Democrats of using powers in the tax law to mount a political witch hunt. Republican lawmakers have invoked privacy concerns and the confidentiality of all tax documents, suggesting that the Democrats would leak Trump's returns so they would become public.

Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani has suggested the Democrats could have a hard time proving their demand was intended for pursuing legitimate congressional oversight and was not a political scavenger hunt.

Mnuchin was asked whether Trump had intervened in some way or asked him to ignore the expected request for the tax returns. "He has not," Mnuchin responded. He said he hasn't discussed the issue with anyone in the White House or with Trump's attorneys.

Jason Chaffetz: Trump’s tax returns and why Democrats are obsessed with them

Jason Chaffetz: Trump’s tax returns and why Democrats are obsessed with them The crown jewels for Democrats in their insatiable quest to overturn the results of the 2016 president election are Donald Trump’s tax returns.   They are convinced Trump has done something nefarious and in blatant violation of the law.  They don’t know what it is yet, but it must be in his tax returns, they guess. Since the election season Democrats have renewed pressure on Trump to release his returns to them. He has refused, citing an ongoing audit.  He is not required by law to disclose them.  Previous candidates for president and vice president have voluntarily disclosed their returns.

Trump said before he launched his campaign that he 'd release them if he ever ran for office. "If I decide to run for office, I' ll produce my tax returns Mnuchin declined to comment on how Trump would benefit from his proposals. He and other administration officials left the room as reporters

Democrats’ legal standing to request Trump ’s tax returns is fairly unambiguous, according to several tax attorneys, but it does come with a few key caveats. Neal does not have any specific time frame for requesting the tax returns , but he does intend to do it, said a Democratic congressional aide.

Trump broke with decades of tradition for presidential candidates by refusing to release his income tax filings during his 2016 campaign. He has said he won't release them because he is being audited, even though IRS officials have said taxpayers under audit are free to release their returns. Trump claimed at a news conference following the November elections that the filings are too complex for people to understand.

Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, during his detailed testimony to a House committee last month, said he asked Trump for paperwork for the audit to prepare Trump's response to reporters about the issue, but never received any documentation. Cohen said that led him to presume that Trump isn't being audited.

Getting Trump's returns has been high on the Democrats' list of priorities since they won control of the House in November's midterm elections. The Democrats tried and failed several times as the minority party in Congress to obtain Trump's returns.

They want to explore numerous aspects of Trump's complex financial dealings and corporate empire. Among them: whether there are conflicts of interest between Trump's companies and his presidential actions, whether he's properly paid taxes and whether he personally benefited from the sweeping Republican-written tax law enacted in late 2017.

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The Electronic Privacy Information Center filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act.

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