U.S. Treasury postpones decision on handing over Donald Trump's tax returns

U.S. Treasury postpones decision on handing over Donald Trump's tax returns

The report states that Neal brushed aside comments made by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin that he doesn't have to order the IRS to provide them as lacking "merit".

Earlier this week, Mnuchin wrote to Neal that he would handle the request instead of the IRS commissioner, emphasizing that the request has an "unprecedented nature".

In a letter to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), House Ways and Means chairman Richard Neal said failure to comply with the new deadline would be interpreted as a denial of request.

The letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig is the latest exchange in a tug of war over Trump's returns, which would give lawmakers far greater insight into the president's business dealings and potential conflicts of interest as it exercises its oversight role.

A lawyer for Trump said in a letter last week that the efforts are an attempt to harass a political opponent and that it would set a "dangerous precedent" for the agency to turn them over.

"The legal implications of this request could affect protections for all Americans against politically-motivated disclosures of personal tax information, regardless of which party is in power", Mnuchin wrote on Wednesday. The law states that three people: the House Ways and Means chairman, the head of the Joint Committee on Taxation and the Chairman of Senate Finance can ask for anyone's personal tax information for their committee's use. "People expect the rule of law to work smoothly, but that" s not always the case".

Every US presidential candidate since 1976 has released their tax returns, but there is no law requiring it. Democrats claim the request is both legal and necessary.

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Trump has repeatedly claimed to be unable to release his tax returns because he is under audit.

On Monday, lawmakers in NY proposed a bill that would allow the commissioner of the state's Department of Taxation and Finance to turn over state tax returns if requested by certain congressional committees.

The issue appears sure to end up in federal court.

Constitutionally, Neal has the power to demand the IRS release tax returns for any United States individual.

With an eye to a legal challenge, Neal told Rettig that he has two weeks to respond - by 5 p.m. on April 23. Neal's request for the returns of a sitting president is unprecedented, and legal experts say its success or failure may depend on a court ruling about the committee's legislative goal for seeking the documents. He said Mr. Trump's tax returns in NY will have some of the same information found in the president's federal tax returns.

William Consovoy, whose firm was retained by Trump to represent him on the matter, has written the Treasury's general counsel and said the congressional request "would set a unsafe precedent" if granted and that the IRS can not legally divulge the information.

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