Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) grilled Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on whether or not he planned to release President Donald Trump’s tax returns if requested by Congress.
During a Capitol Hill hearing on Trump’s proposed 2020 budget, the congressman made a point to ask Mnuchin about his stance on releasing Trump’s tax returns.
“Let me just ask you directly,” Doggett said.
Watch the video below, via ABC News:
In a contentious back-and-forth, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin says, "If I receive a request" to release President Trump's tax returns, "I will consult with the legal department within Treasury, and I will follow the law" https://t.co/0xg9RIxuhG pic.twitter.com/HrdwfdOHhK
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) March 14, 2019
Doggett reminded Mnuchin that under section 6103(f)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code, the Treasury secretary must provide the Ways and Means Committee chairman with any requested tax returns. He then asked Mnuchin about his readiness to carry out the task.
“Are you willing to provide and fulfill the command of the statute and your mandatory duty to promptly release any personal and business tax returns of President Trump that you’re requested to provide?” Doggett asked.
“Well, Mr. Congressman, let me first comment on the first part of that,” Mnuchin responded, as a small quarrel began to arise between the two.
“I just want to be sure I get an oral answer to my question,” the congressman fired back.
“Let me just make sure I answer the first part, which I think is highly unfair, OK?” Mnuchin rebutted. “First of all, I did come and give a classified briefing.”
Doggett then interrupted Mnuchin, noting that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) referred to the Treasury secretary’s briefing as a “waste of time” and letting Mnuchin know it was his mutual belief.
“Let me ask you, Mr. Secretary, you can give any explanation the time, and the chairman and Mr. Brady will provide, but will you comply with the command of the statute and provide the returns under [section] 6103?” the congressman asked.
“The answer is, I will — if I receive a request, which I presume from what I’ve read in the press I will receive, I will consult with the legal department within Treasury, and I will follow the law,” Mnuchin responded when Doggett asked him to address the question with a definitive yes or no.