GOP scoffs at law allowing release of Trump's state taxes




  • In Politics
  • 2019-07-08 18:58:57Z
  • By Associated Press
 

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - President Donald Trump's New York tax returns could be given to Congress under a new law in his home state that was signed Monday by the Democratic governor and dismissed by Republicans as a partisan game that wouldn't stand up in court.

The measure signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo directs state tax officials to share state returns of certain elected and appointed officials upon written request from the chairpersons of one of three committees: House Ways and Means, Senate Finance or Joint Committee on Taxation.

Designed to give Congress a way around the Republican president's refusal to release his returns, the new law is expected to face legal challenges. And it's unclear whether Congress will request access to Trump's state returns, which tax experts say would include many of the same details as his federal return.

"No one person - no matter what office they might hold - is above the law," said Sen. Brad Hoylman, a Manhattan Democrat and the Senate sponsor of the legislation.

All sides expect legal challenges and requests for injunctions, meaning it could be many months before any state tax returns are handed over. The White House did not return a message seeking comment Monday on the law.

Trump has long filed taxes in New York as a resident of the state. He is the first president since Watergate to decline to make his returns public, often claiming that he would release them if he were not under audit.

The president has not weighed in on the new law but has repeatedly accused New York Democrats of using their positions to harass him and his allies. Republicans in New York say that while the law was written to target Trump, it could be used to go after any other official who pays taxes in the state.

"This is purely political," state Republican Party Chairman Nick Langworthy told reporters Monday. "It is an attempt to settle political scores."

Langworthy predicted the law "will never stand up in the courts."

Democrats are eager to get ahold of the returns, which could reveal details about his business dealings, his debts and international financial ties.

If Congress does request and obtain Trump's state tax returns, that doesn't mean the public gets to see them. Under federal law, the confidential information in the returns is supposed to be for the committee's eyes only.

To address concerns about the tax privacy of everyday New Yorkers, state lawmakers narrowed the measure so it applies only to the state income tax returns elected officials, party leaders and top public officials, like judges - as well as any businesses or legal entities they control.

In addition, state tax officials would be required to redact personal information, such as Social Security numbers or personal addresses, before handing over the documents.

Top lawmakers in Washington have differed on whether congressional committees should make use of the new law.

U.S. House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat, has touted the bill as "a workaround to a White House that continues to obstruct and stonewall the legitimate oversight work of Congress."

Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal, D-Massachusetts, however, has signaled that he may not be interested. Neal is already pursuing Trump's federal returns and has threatened to go to court in order to get the administration to comply.

"The difficulty is that we don't have control over state taxes," Neal said in May when asked about the New York legislation. "For the moment, we're still proceeding on our own path."

The group Stand Up America, created in 2016 to mobilize opposition to Trump, urged Democrats in Washington to immediately request Trump's state returns.

"New York has provided Congress a new route for getting answers on behalf of the American people - and all they have to do is ask," Ryan Thomas, a spokesman for the organization, said in a statement. "Any further delay is an injustice to the American people who deserve transparency about Trump's foreign entanglements and massive conflicts of interest."

Neal has issued subpoenas for six years of Trump's tax documents, but Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has so far resisted, saying Congress' request "lacks a legitimate legislative purpose."

COMMENTS

More Related News

Millions of Barrels of Iranian Oil Are Piled Up in China
Millions of Barrels of Iranian Oil Are Piled Up in China's Ports

(Bloomberg) -- Tankers are offloading millions of barrels of Iranian oil into storage tanks at Chinese ports, creating a hoard of crude sitting on the doorstep of the world's biggest buyer.Two and a half months after the White House banned the purchase of Iran's oil, the nation's crude is continuing

Voice Of America Ignores Reasons For Trump
Voice Of America Ignores Reasons For Trump's Criticism Of Rep. Ilhan Omar

Ilhan Omar, but failed to include most of the reasons for the criticism.VOA wrote "Trump has found his latest target for acerbic ridicule - a hijab-wearing Muslim newcomer to Congress named Ilhan Omar."The news agency mentioned briefly only two instances of Omar's anti-Semitic remarks, referring to one as playing "off tropes questioning the influence of Jewish money in American politics."Trump began tweeting Sunday about how the "'Progressive' Democrat Congresswomen…should go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it's done."The tweets were likely aimed at Democratic Reps. Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New...

Trump renews attacks on Democratic congresswoman Omar
Trump renews attacks on Democratic congresswoman Omar
  • US
  • 2019-07-19 18:40:58Z

Somali-born U.S. congresswoman Ilhan Omar is "lucky to be where she is," President Donald Trump said on Friday, pressing on with attacks on four minority women Democratic U.S. representatives he has said should "go back" to where they came from. Trump on Thursday sought to distance himself from supporters' chants of "send her back" at a rally where he blasted Omar, as his fellow Republicans worried the sharp rhetoric might become a theme of his 2020 re-election campaign. "I'm unhappy when a congresswoman goes and says: 'I'm going to be the president's nightmare,'" Trump told reporter at the White House on Friday.

U.S. intelligence chief creates election security position
U.S. intelligence chief creates election security position

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, who has drawn criticism from President Donald Trump for assessments that countered his policies, said on Friday he was creating a new position to focus solely on U.S. election security. "Election security is an enduring challenge and a top priority for the IC (international community)," Coats said in a statement. Coats said he had tapped Shelby Pierson, the DNI's crisis manager for election security during the 2018 congressional elections, for the job.

Brazil
Brazil's Petrobras refuses to refuel Iran ships due to US sanctions

US-listed Brazilian state oil giant Petrobras said Friday it will not refuel two Iranian vessels that have been stuck for weeks at a Brazilian port for fear of violating American sanctions. Washington has imposed a slate of sanctions on Tehran and companies with ties to the Islamic republic since President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of a landmark nuclear pact last year. The ships Bavand and Termeh, which reportedly belong to Iranian company Sapid Shipping, arrived at Paranagua port in the southern state of Parana early last month, an official at the port told AFP.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

facebook
Hit "Like"
Don't miss any important news
Thanks, you don't need to show me this anymore.