Los Angeles Times

Congress can access Trump’s tax returns


WASHINGTON — The Justice Department says the Treasury Department must provide former President Trump’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee, apparently ending a long legal showdown over the records.

During the Trump administra­tion, then-Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said he wouldn’t turn over the tax returns because he concluded they were being sought for partisan reasons by Democrats who control the House of Representa­tives.

The committee sued for the records under a federal law that says the Internal Revenue Service “shall furnish” the returns of any taxpayer to a group of top lawmakers. The committee said it needed Trump’s taxes for an investigat­ion into whether he complied with tax law.

In a memo dated Friday, the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel said the committee chairman “has invoked sufficient reasons for requesting the former President’s tax informatio­n” and that under federal law “Treasury must furnish the informatio­n to the Committee.”

Manhattan Dist. Atty. Cyrus Vance Jr. already has obtained copies of Trump’s personal and business tax records as part of an ongoing criminal investigat­ion. Trump tried to prevent his accountant­s from handing over the documents, taking the issue to the Supreme Court. The justices rejected Trump’s argument that he had broad immunity as president.

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