IL bill proposes Trump showing tax returns to appear on 2020 ballot

IL bill proposes Trump showing tax returns to appear on 2020 ballot

IL bill proposes Trump showing tax returns to appear on 2020 ballot

In the two-page letter, Neal, who set an April 23 deadline, argued the IRS has an "unambiguous legal obligation" to turn over the president's returns under section 6103 of the tax code, which states that the treasury secretary "shall furnish" a request from the congressional committees with tax oversight.

Federal law gives the chairmen of House Ways and Means, Senate Finance Committee and the Joint Committee on Taxation the power to request the returns of any taxpayer, although some legal scholars believe the request needs a legitimate legislative goal, which Democrats say they have met.

After a week, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin - rather than Rettig - told Neal that the returns weren't yet available, as "t$3 he committee's request raises serious issues concerning the constitutional scope of Congressional investigative authority, the legitimacy of the asserted legislative objective, and the constitutional rights of American citizens".

"I expect a reply from the IRS by 5:00 p.m. on April 23, 2019" Neal wrote in the letter to Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Charles Rettig, obtained by CNN. "If you fail to comply, your failure will be interpreted as a denial of my request".

"It is not the proper function of the IRS, Treasury, or Justice to question or second guess the motivations of the Committee or its reasonable determinations regarding its need for the requested tax returns", continued Neal.

"Judicial precedent commands that none of the concerns raised can legitimately be used to deny the committee's request". "Those concerns lack merit". Mnuchin so far has only postponed responding to Democrats' request and said he would confer with the Justice Department, but not yet rejected it. Experts have repeatedly pointed out that being under audit does not preclude the release of such information.

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The issue appears sure to end up in federal court.

Legal experts say lawmakers could vote to hold administration officials in contempt of Congress, which would provide a basis for the House to ask a federal judge to order the Treasury Department to comply. Neal asked for Trump's returns a week ago.

The request for Trump's tax filings is but one of many oversight efforts launched by Democrats after taking back the House in last fall's midterms.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Illinois is one of 18 states nationwide considering legislation on Trump's tax returns, which also includes New York, Colorado and Washington.

"They want to investigate how the IRS audits presidents, but some of the info they requested has nothing to do with that".

Trump's personal attorney, William Consovoy, has called the request a "gross abuse of power". Neal's request for the returns of a sitting president is unprecedented, and legal experts say its success or failure may depend on a court ruling about the committee's legislative goal for seeking the documents.

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