U.S. Supreme Court Takes up Trump Bid to Shield Financial Records

Jonathan Ernst/File Photo/Reuters

The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear President Donald Trump’s appeals in three separate cases to prevent his financial records, including tax returns, being handed over to Democratic-led House of Representatives committees and a New York prosecutor.

The Republican president is trying to block subpoenas for bank records, tax returns or other materials demanded by various Democratic-led House of Representatives committees investigating corruption or foreign meddling in the U.S. elections process. The House probes are not part of the Democratic-led impeachment proceedings against Trump over his dealings with Ukraine.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, a Democrat, is seeking Trump’s tax returns in a criminal investigation of the president, the Trump Organization and his family real estate business.

The court will hold oral arguments in March, with rulings due by the end of June.

“We are pleased that the Supreme Court granted review of the President’s three pending cases. These cases raise significant constitutional issues,” said Jay Sekulow, one of Trump’s lawyers.

Democratic leaders in the House expressed disappointment that the justices’ decision to hear the cases will result in further delay.

“Unfortunately, the American people will now have to wait several more months for final rulings,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement. “We are confident that the Supreme Court … will uphold the Constitution, the rulings of the lower courts and ensure that Congressional oversight can proceed.”

A spokesman for Vance declined to comment.

The cases are a test for how the justices view Trump’s arguments that the subpoenas are a threat to the presidency, on the one hand, and the need for lawmakers or prosecutors for information to pursue legislation or criminal investigations on the other.

The court has a 5-4 conservative majority including two Trump appointees, Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

The justices’ decision to review the legality of the subpoenas investigating Trump’s conduct adds another politically-contentious issue to a court term that already includes high-profile cases on abortion, LGBT worker rights, gun rights and the fate of “dreamer” immigrants brought illegally to the United States as children.

One of the Trump cases is his appeal of a lower court ruling allowing a New York grand jury to subpoena his accounting firm Mazars LLP for his records.

Trump’s attorneys said prosecutors could be encouraged to investigate a president to advance their careers or score political points if that subpoena is enforced.

Another case concerns a lower court decision in Washington that endorsed subpoenas issued by the Democratic-led House Oversight Committee to Mazars.

Trump’s lawyers say there was no legislative purpose for the subpoenas and that the aim was merely to dig for dirt on the president.

In the third case, the justices will review a lower court ruling allowing the enforcement of separate House committee subpoenas targeting Trump-related financial records from Deutsche Bank AG <DBKGn.DE> and Capital One Financial Corp <COF.N>.

The court on Friday extended its hold on the lower court ruling, which it had temporarily blocked last week.

The lower court rulings in the congressional cases, if left intact, would bring House Democrats closer to getting some of the details about Trump’s business interests.

That outcome would also amount to a major blow for the president, who, unlike past presidents, has refused to publicly disclose his tax returns.

Legal experts say the justices often hear cases when the president asks them to, but that does not mean Trump will ultimately prevail.

(Reporting by Lawrence Hurley and Andrew Chung; Additional reporting by Karen Freifeld; editing by Grant McCool)

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James
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>Tracy<

I certainly wish Barry's half-brother – Malik – would bring out his (Barry's) Kenyan birth certificate again. He revealed it to the press a couple years ago; but the Kenyan is hiding out on Martha's Vineyard so who cares now where he was born? Or question his legal name? Or his Indonesian citizenship? And IF he is an American (very doubtful), how did he get into college as a "FOREIGN EXCHANGE" student? He snookered the American people and is laughing all the way to the bank with those greenbacks.

General Confusion
Member

I am confused, Tracy. What rock have you been hiding under? It was headline news for a long time that President Obama had released his birth certificate. If you are so interested in seeing it, just do a search for it. “I am sure if there was a problem it has been fixed or dealt with a long time ago.” Tracy My, my, you ARE a naïve one, aren’t you? The IRS had been so defunded that they can’t spend the time to investigate the complicated returns of big corporations and wealthy people any more. They only have the resources… Read more »

banstan
Member

Have any one of you noticed that when an article appears here that just might show Trump is correct in his assertions, which he definitely here is because the Supreme Court is going to hear arguments, that philly and contusion are silent? Wonder why?

Tess
Member

Here is what the liberal extremists probably haven’t considered: Perhaps Trump intended (or at least assumed) his Tax Returns would be released….and show absolutely nothing illegal or criminal. It certainly would make the crazy Dems dogged – if not rabid – pursuit of them appear all that much more asinine in retrospect.

Rhonda
Member

Good. It’s none of anyone’s frigging business to know how Trump conducted business prior to becoming President. He’s NOT a criminal, unlike those that are presently serving in Congress, for ALL of them. The only one who wasn’t a criminal was Jeff Sessions, and that’s why they feared him most as AG… because he could not be blackmailed or compromised by bribery. Peter Schweitzer wrote about how he polled the Congress members, and they ALL pointed to Jeff Sessions as being the most honest, and high level of integrity, of all of them.

Sherri
Member

This is toooooooo funny! Dems are impeaching because Trump wouldn’t give records. They said taking it to court, as Trump was willing to do, was “obstruction of Congress” and the SCOTUS just agreed to hear cases about the fight to release docs to the House. Do you realize what this does to the second article of the baseless impeach sham? It’s total delegitimization of it. LOLOLOLOLOLOL!

Tracy
Member

President Trump is audited every year. I am sure if there was a problem it has been fixed or dealt with a long time ago.

He is rich, no one needs to see his tax returns.

No one was able to see Obama’s birth certificate.

Marlene Marty Fowler-helfrick
Member

If they can do this to the president they can do it to anyone they want to silence. If the Supreme Court rules it’s legal the I will demand all financial and tax records of Pelosi,Schiff, Waters, Schumer, Green, Biden, and every other democrat socialist. Democrats are obviously very short sighted as we can do to them what they do to us.

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