A three-judge appeals court on the D.C. Circuit has ruled that the House Ways and Means Committee can request and obtain tax records of former President Donald Trump from the IRS, just one day after the FBI raided Trump’s Mar-A-Lago estate.
“While it is possible that Congress may attempt to threaten the sitting President with an invasive request after leaving office, every President takes office knowing that he will be subject to the same laws as all other citizens upon leaving office,” Senior Circuit Judge David Sentelle wrote in the unanimous ruling released on Tuesday.
“This is a feature of our democratic republic, not a bug,” Sentelle added.
The judges rejected arguments from Trump’s lawyers that the request was from political motives.
“When the Committee makes a request that is within its authority to make, i.e., within Congress’s investigative power, the Secretary does not have a choice as to whether to provide the information,” the ruling said.
Trump tried for years to prevent Congress and other officials from getting his tax records, which the Ways and Means Committee has been trying to get since 2019.
The committee was excited over the possibility of getting the long-requested records.
“We expect to receive the requested tax returns and audit files immediately,” the Committee said Tuesday on its official Twitter account.
🚨 🚨 🚨 BREAKING: The DC Court of Appeals has just ruled that the law is on our side in seeking Trump’s tax returns. We expect to receive the requested tax returns and audit files immediately.https://t.co/FYzFzYrxF8
— Ways & Means Committee (@WaysMeansCmte) August 9, 2022
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) also seemed elated at the idea of getting her hands on the records.
“Today’s decision ordering the release of Donald Trump’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee is an important victory for the rule of law,” Pelosi said on Twitter.
“Access to the former president’s tax returns is crucial to upholding the public interest, our national security & our Democracy,” she went on.