Former President Donald Trump filed an emergency appeal to the Supreme Court Monday asking the nine justices to prevent the House Ways and Means Committee from seeing his tax returns.
In the 38-page filing, Trump attorney Cameron Norris asked the high court to stay a DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruling from August which found the committee’s request for the 45th president’s returns between 2013 and 2018 to be justified.
“Left unreviewed, the D.C. Circuit’s decision will have far-reaching implications,” Norris wrote. “It will establish important (but incorrect) precedent for the political branches moving forward, binding in the circuit in which most conflicts over congressional demands for information must be litigated.”
The filing asked the Supreme Court to issue a stay of the appeals court’s ruling by Wednesday. The matter now goes before Chief Justice John Roberts, who handles requests emanating from the DC Circuit.
In August, the three-judge panel upheld a lower court ruling from December 2021 that denied Trump’s assertion that the request for the documents was “politically motivated.”
The panel had first requested the business and personal returns in 2019 as part of an investigation into whether the IRS was properly auditing presidential returns.
The committee, led by Rep. Richard Neal (D-Mass.) later sued Trump under a federal law that requires taxpayers to turn over returns to selected lawmakers upon request.
Trump became the first presidential candidate in four decades to refuse to voluntarily disclose his tax returns as he sought to keep the finances of his namesake business, the Trump Organization, under wraps during his 2016 presidential campaign.
Norris argued Monday that the law doesn’t apply to businesses, and said the Ways and Means Committee’s continuing interests in the potential 2024 presidential candidate’s returns were purely political.
“The Committee’s purpose in requesting President Trump’s tax returns has nothing to do with funding or staffing issues at the IRS and everything to do with releasing the President’s tax information to the public,” he wrote.
The filing was made on the same day a criminal fraud trial against the Trump Organization began in Manhattan.
The company is accused of a wide-ranging scheme to help executives dodge taxes by gifting them lucrative perks. Allen Weisselberg, the former CFO of the company, pleaded guilty to 15 counts of tax fraud this summer and is expected to be a star witness for the prosecution.
The former president does not personally criminal face charges but he and his three oldest children, who now run the Trump Organization, are being sued by the state of New York for allegedly inflating the value of its properties.
With Post wires