Donald Trump has done a remarkably good job at stonewalling any oversight of him or his administration. He has refused to release one piece of paper or one person to the House of Representative investigative committees. Not only that, he has forbidden former employees to talk. Never fear, Democrats have a solution.
Several of the Democratically chaired committees requested the president’s back taxes. POTUS has fought against releasing his taxes harder than any other request. Therefore, New York state officials recently decided to write and pass a new law that would allow them to release the president’s state taxes to the committees.
Trump’s state taxes would include much of the information on his Federal Tax returns. The president’s business headquarters and primary personal addresses are located in New York.
Of course, Trump sued to challenge the state law. However, New York officials counter sued, according to Law360.com:
‘New York officials on Thursday filed a new motion to dismiss President Trump‘s legal challenge to the state’s law that allows Congress to request his New York tax returns. In the new document, the officials argue that Trump’s amended complaint in the case doesn’t change their position that the case shouldn’t take place in Washington, D.C.’
New York Attorney General (AG) Letitia (Tish) James (D) released a statement that read:
‘President Trump has spent his career hiding behind lawsuits, and this one is no different. The president’s latest complaint is irrelevant, unreasonable, and factually inaccurate, which is why we believe this case deserves to be dismissed or otherwise moved to a New York court.’
New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) signed the law into action. It was named the TRUST Act. Washington members of Congress will be able to seek any president’s “state tax returns from the commissioner of the New York Department of Taxation and Finance,” if they reside in New York.
Thus far, the House Ways and Means Committee Chair Richard Neal (D-MA) has not asked for POTUS’ New York returns. Apparently, he has still been focused on obtaining the president’s tax returns via the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) route.
Right after Cuomo signed the legislation into law, Trump’s tax attorneys filed a lawsuit in a Washington federal court against the Ways and Means Committee, Attorney General James, and the New York tax official Michael Schmidt. They claimed that the new New York law was a violation of the president’s First Amendment rights as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
Then, the AG’s office filed a motion to move Trump’s federal court case from Washington to New York or dismiss it entirely.
In a game of who can sue the most, the president’s tax attorney revised his complaint. It added details supporting their case to keep the hearing in Washington. They also claimed that Schmidt had a residence in Washington at an earlier time, and the attorney general frequently comes to Washington to attend events or attend fundraisers as evidence for keeping the case in Washington.
By doing so, Trumps’ attorneys automatically made moot New York’s first motion to dismiss the case. In a counter move, New York attorneys in the AG’s office filed a new motion.
New York officials claimed that none of Trump’s amended complaint regarding the attorney general and Schmidt’s linked the case to Washington:
‘…bears any relationship to his sole First Amendment claim against the New York Defendants.’
The president’s attorney also:
‘…argued in the amended complaint that most of the relevant conduct at issue in the case will take place in D.C. But the New York officials countered in their Thursday filing that the enactment of the TRUST Act in New York is the reason why Trump would allegedly suffer any possible injury.’
New York officials argued:
‘In short, Plaintiff’s newly-amended complaint does nothing to cure the fatal absence of any allegations that would support the [D.C.] Court’s exercise of personal jurisdiction over the New York Defendants or a determination that this Court is a proper venue to hear a challenge to a New York statute permitting disclosure of New York state tax information.’
The next hearing for the New York’s AG attorney’s arguments about the jurisdiction will happen on September 18 in Washington. The judge who has been handling the various iterations of the lawsuits, Judge Carl Nichols, ordered that New York would not release any of Trump’s tax returns until a week after the judge makes his ruling “on the state’s motion.”
The Mueller Report Adventures: In Bite-Sizes on this Facebook page. These quick, two-minute reads interpret the report in normal English for busy people. Mueller Bite-Sizes uncovers what is essentially a compelling spy mystery. Interestingly enough, Mueller Bite-Sizes can be read in any order.