House committee sends new letter to IRS demanding Trump’s tax returns

House committee sends new letter to IRS demanding Trump’s tax returns

House committee sends new letter to IRS demanding Trump’s tax returns

US federal law clearly details that when the chairman of the US House Ways and Means Committee provides a request in writing for any US citizen's tax returns - even a sitting US president - the US Treasury, now headed by Trump appointee Steve Mnuchin, "shall furnish" the documents.

Earlier this week, Mnuchin wrote to Neal that he would handle the request instead of the IRS commissioner, emphasizing that the request has an "unprecedented nature".

Neal argued in this second letter that the law granting him the authority to request tax documents is "Unambiguous and raises no complicated legal issues that warrant supervision or review by" the Justice or Treasury Departments. "Those concerns lack merit".

Mr Trump himself has claimed that he can not release his tax returns because they are under audit, although technically there is nothing preventing him from doing so.

Hoylman, who represents a Manhattan district, introduced legislation that would allow the New York Department of Taxation and Finance to send Congress state tax returns requested by three Congressional committees for a "specific and legitimate legislative goal".

House Democrats have set a hard, 10-day deadline for President Trump to cough up his tax returns - and repeated their threats of legal action if the administration refuses. The law that Neal is relying on says the IRS "shall furnish" any tax return requested by the chairmen of key House and Senate committees.

On Monday, lawmakers in NY proposed a bill that would allow the commissioner of the state's Department of Taxation and Finance to turn over state tax returns if requested by certain congressional committees.

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Mnuchin said that Treasury Department lawyers have been working "diligently" to research the issues involved and have been in contact with Justice Department attorneys.

The increasingly embattled United States 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 U.S. tax law, cited by multiple sources.

Trump appears prepared to fight this to the Supreme Court.

Neal told IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig that if he does not respond to his letter, Neal will interpret that as denying the request, setting the stage for a potential court battle. Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Texas, said in a statement that alluded to the 1924 statute that mandates the IRS provide any taxpayer's returns when asked by a handful of top lawmakers.

Neal also wrote that concerns about the committee's access to the returns were "baseless".

But on Saturday, he said the administration would respond by the latest target date.

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