Speed Reads


Supreme Court shoots down Trump's effort to keep his taxes from Congress

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday cleared the path for congressional investigators to obtain tax records from Donald Trump and his businesses, ending a last-ditch effort by the former president to block House Democrats from seeing his financial documents. 

Trump had initially petitioned the high court in October to step in and prevent the IRS from handing over six years of tax records to the House Ways and Means Committee, after an appeals court determined that Congress could have access to the documents. In their filing, Trump's attorneys claimed that "as justification for seeking these papers — and these papers alone — the Committee has offered only an interest in studying the staffing and funding of the IRS's audit process for Presidents and Vice Presidents." In fact, they claimed, the true purpose of requesting the records has "everything to do with releasing the President's tax information to the public" — something Trump had repeatedly sworn to do himself, without following through on his promises. 

As attorneys for the government pointed out in their statement to the court, any delay "would leave the Committee and Congress as a whole little or no time to complete their legislative work during this Congress, which is quickly approaching its end." 

While the Court had initially stayed the appeals court's decision while it considered the matter, Tuesday's decision effectively guarantees that House investigators will have no further legal barriers to accessing the documents. There were no noted dissensions from any of the Supreme Court justices.