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Trump Is Going To Lose His Legal Battle To Hide His Tax Records, Lawyers Have No Idea What They Are Doing

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As we all know, President Donald Trump is still totally adamant that he will not publish his tax records. He insists that everyone should just trust him when he says there is nothing to see there. Unsurprisingly, Congressional Democrats are not buying that. And the defense offered by Trump’s legal team is appallingly bad, as recent reports have revealed:

Trump’s lawyers make two arguments, neither of which should prevent Congress from obtaining the information it seeks. The first is that Congress did not comply with procedures outlined by the Right to Financial Privacy Act — a plausible claim, but ultimately one without much force because the House could cure any violation by simply following those procedures. The more potent claim is that the subpoenas exceed Congress’ lawful authority because the House lacks “a legitimate legislative purpose” for seeking the financial information it requested. To support this claim, Trump’s lawyers primarily rely on a 1975 Supreme Court case called Eastland v. U.S. Servicemen’s Fund.

It is true that, in a footnote, Eastland does say that when Congress seeks information from one source about a third party, “a court may inquire to determine whether a legitimate legislative purpose is present.” But virtually everything else in the Eastland opinion cuts against Trump’s legal position — and it cuts hard. As House Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Waters explained, the records seek to investigate “potential use of the U.S. financial system for illicit purposes” — and they seek to investigate such alleged illicit use of the U.S. financial system by the President of the United States.

That’s right. As Maxine Waters has explained brilliantly here, the Trump legal team is so shockingly incompetent that it has chosen to base its entire case on a past case that works directly against the point they are trying to make. The Eastland case is the perfect example of why Trump essentially has no choice but to comply with the requests of Congress and hand over whatever documents are requested in their subpoenas, so it would have been in their interest to not mention that case in hope the other side never thought of it. The other side will, of course, be absolutely delighted that Trump’s lawyers have essentially done their job for them. As a result, it is now only a matter of time before Trump’s tax records become public in full, and we get to see exactly what he has been trying so desperately to hide for all this time.


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