An attorney for former President Trump says he will fight to block the release of his tax returns days after the Department of Justice ordered them turned over to the Democratic-led House Ways and Means Committee.
“There is no evidence of any wrongdoing here and I object to the release of the returns not only on behalf of my client but on behalf of all future holders of the office of the president of the United States,” Ronald Fischetti, a lawyer for Trump, told The Wall Street Journal.
Fischetti did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.
In a memo from the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, acting Assistant Attorney General Dawn Johnsen on Friday said the Treasury Department is required to defer to the congressional committee.
“The statute at issue here is unambiguous: ‘Upon written request’ of the chairman of one of the three congressional tax committees, the Secretary ‘shall furnish’ the requested tax information to the Committee,” Johnsen wrote in the 39-page memo.
If the committee receives Trump’s tax returns, it can examine the documents in a closed session. It could then vote to release a report to the full House, making some or all of the documents public.
The Treasury Department has indicated it plans to release the returns.
Trump is participating in the court case over the tax return request in his personal capacity, and his lawyers have expressed an interest in having their arguments heard in court before the returns are turned over to Ways and Means.
Judge Trevor McFadden, a federal judge in Washington, D.C., appointed by Trump, has ordered the Biden administration to give Trump’s lawyers 72 hours’ notice before giving any of the former president’s tax returns to the committee. That order is currently set to expire Tuesday, at which point both parties have been asked to lay out a timeframe for written arguments in the case.
Via The Hill