Supreme Court Rules 7-2 New York Prosecutor Can Access Trump Tax Records, May Not Be Handed Over Before Election
On Thursday morning, the U.S. Supreme ruled against President Donald Trump in two cases, permitting New York investigators to see Trump’s taxes and financial documents, meaning Trump’s defeat in preventing his finances from being investigated.
In the first case, In Trump v. Vance, the court ruled 7-2 in favor of the Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, which subpoenaed Trumps’s tax returns as it investigates if Trump businesses violated state laws. In the second case, the court also ruled 7-2 in Trump v. Mazars USA, giving Congress the power to subpoena the president’s financial records, but set limits on Congress’s powers.
Both cases are, however, were sent back to lower courts for further proceedings, which means that the president’s financial records likely will not be released for public access before the November election.
The court rejected Trump’s efforts to prevent Vance from obtaining his financial records, as his attorney claimed that that the president had “absolute immunity” from state criminal proceedings. In the congressional case, they ordered lower courts to more carefully consider concerns about the separation of powers.
“Two hundred years ago, a great jurist of our Court established that no citizen, not even the President, is categorically above the common duty to produce evidence when called upon in a criminal proceeding,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote for the majority. “We reaffirm that principle today and hold that the President is neither absolutely immune from state criminal subpoenas seeking his private papers nor entitled to a heightened standard of need.”
Vance celebrated the case ruling, calling it “a tremendous victory for our nation’s system of justice.”
“Our investigation, which was delayed for almost a year by this lawsuit, will resume, guided as always by the grand jury’s solemn obligation to follow the law and the facts, wherever they may lead,” Vance said.
Trump’s lawyer Jay Sekulow said he was pleased that the case was sent to the lower court, which temporarily shields Trump’s financial records from being obtained by Congress and public.
“We are pleased that in the decisions issued today, the Supreme Court has temporarily blocked both Congress and New York prosecutors from obtaining the President’s tax records,” he said in a statement. “We will now proceed to raise additional constitutional and legal issues in the lower courts.”
Trump, however, did not see it as a victory and attacked the court decision in a series of tweets, calling the decision a “PROSECUTORIAL MISCONDUCT.”
“Courts in the past have given “broad deference”. BUT NOT ME!” he tweeted.
The Supreme Court sends case back to Lower Court, arguments to continue. This is all a political prosecution. I won the Mueller Witch Hunt, and others, and now I have to keep fighting in a politically corrupt New York. Not fair to this Presidency or Administration!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 9, 2020
Trump also accused former President Barack Obama and former Vice President Joe Biden of “spying” on his campaign without evidence and said court supposedly dismissed it.
“We catch the other side SPYING on my campaign, the biggest political crime and scandal in U.S. history, and NOTHING HAPPENS. But despite this, I have done more than any President in history in first 3 1/2 years!” Trump tweeted.