Trump's handpicked IRS chief and IRS legal counsel both have ties to Trump businesses

Trump in the Oval Office
(Image credit: Getty Images)

President Trump personally lobbied Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to prioritize the confirmation of his nominated Internal Revenue Service chief counsel on Feb. 5, about the time House Democrats started talking seriously about telling the IRS to turn over Trump's tax returns, The New York Times reports. On Feb. 27, the Senate confirmed the nominee, California tax lawyer Michael Desmond, and now Desmond will be advising the IRS on how to respond to House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal's (D-Mass.) request for six years of Trump's personal and business tax returns.

As a private tax lawyer, Desmond had briefly advised the Trump Organization on what a spokesman called a "discrete" IRS reporting matter before Trump took office, Bloomberg reported last July, and he worked alongside two current tax counsels to the Trump Organization, Sheri Dillon and William Nelson.

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