The U.S. Treasury Department is acting lawfully in refusing to provide President Donald Trump’s tax returns to House Democrats despite a federal law that says the government “shall furnish” any requested information about a private citizen, the Justice Department said in a new legal memo published Friday.
Federal law has long permitted the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee to inspect the tax returns of private individuals, and the law does not require congressional lawmakers to state a reason for wanting to review a citizen’s tax records. But the Justice Department is arguing that Democrats have offered “pretextual” reasons for wanting to see Trump’s records and that the Treasury secretary was not out of bounds to “close his eyes and blindly accept a pretextual justification for that request.”
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