A federal appeals court ruled against President Trump in his attempt to stop a House subpoena for his tax documents from his longtime accountant Mazars USA.
In a 2-1 ruling, a panel of judges for the Federal Appeals Court for the D.C. Circuit ruled on Friday that the House Oversight and Reform Committee’s subpoena, seeking financial records on Trump and several of his business entities, is “valid and enforceable.”
Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) celebrated the ruling, calling it a “fundamental and resounding victory for Congressional oversight, our Constitutional system of checks and balances, and the rule of law.”
“For far too long, the President has placed his personal interests over the interests of the American people,” Cummings said in a statement Friday. “After months of delay, it is time for the President to stop blocking Mazars from complying with the Committee’s lawful subpoena.”
Jay Sekulow, a personal lawyer for Trump, said in a statement that Trump’s team is “reviewing the opinion and evaluating all options including appeals.”
The Oversight Committee issued a subpoena in April to Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars USA, seeking years’ worth of financial records on Trump and several of his business entities.
The Hill reports:
Cummings told committee members that he wanted the information from Mazars to investigate whether Trump has engaged in illegal conduct, has any conflicts of interest or is complying with the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause and to investigate whether Trump has accurately reported his finances to federal ethics officials. Cummings said that the committee’s interest in these topics will inform its review of legislative proposals.
Trump filed a lawsuit challenging the subpoena, arguing that it lacks a legitimate legislative purpose. A federal district court judge ruled in favor of the Oversight and Reform Committee, and Trump appealed. In the appeals court’s majority ruling, the judges said that the Oversight panel was engaged in a “legitimate legislative investigation” when it issued the subpoena and that the subpoena seeks information on a subject that could be a focus of legislation.
“In sum, we detect no inherent constitutional flaw in laws requiring Presidents to publicly disclose certain financial information,” the majority wrote. “And that is enough.”