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Supreme Court appears headed for a split decision on Trump taxes, financial records

By | Rachel Brooks

Staff | Telegraph Local

See | The New African Living Standard

MSNBC broadcast shows moments of on-air discussion as Trump’s tax return privatization fight goes to the SCOTUS.

The Supreme Court has appeared to reach a split decision over the U.S. President Donald Trump’s taxes and financial records. This was reported by NBC News on May 12. NBC states that the Congress appears to have reached a verdict to rule that went too far in seeking broad access to President Trump’s personal financial documents. Yet, in a split decision, a New York prosecutor may be able to seize his tax records. This verdict appears to have been reached after justices heard a three hour session of teleconference call arguments. 

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Fox News reported that the Supreme Court justices now question the limits of Congress over subpoena power in the case of presidential immunity. Fox called this a “constitutional showdown.” 

“How can we both protect the House interests and obtain information it needs to legislate, but also protect the presidency? How can the court balance those interests?” asked Justice Brett Kavanaugh. 

Justice Neil Gorsuch stated that under normal circumstances law enforcement measures are taken to investigate evidence of a particular crime. They are not taken to see if a crime has been committed. 

Justice Sonia Sotomayor questioned the process of using the current president as a “case study” for potential future legislation. Sotomayor was concerned that an action to expose Trump’s tax records by force of the court will violate restrictions on exposing for the sake of exposure. 

Yet Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan argued that the need for a subpoena had been pitched and that the Supreme Court decision to limit subpoena power would limit Congressional functionality. 

“You’re asking us to put a kind of 10-ton weight on the scales between the president and Congress, and essentially to make it impossible for Congress to perform oversight and to carry out its functions,” said Justice Kagan to Justice Department lawyer Jeffrey Wall. 

Justice Ginsburg also brought to mind the events of Clinton vs. Jones and stated that Congress could use their power in this instance to harass a political rival. She reminded her peers that the court is there to keep political harassment of the president in check. 

The arguments were split over the fact that Trump’s lawyers argued that Congress does not have unlimited power to issue subpoenas in the event that they distract the president from his duties. This was reported by NBC News on November 4, 2019. The lawyers used this argument to attempt to prevent New York prosecutors from obtaining Trump’s tax and financial records. This argument continues as Democratic majorities began seeking to obtain several years’ worth of tax records from Trump, as reported by NBC News on November 18, 2019. The House wants to obtain this information to see if Trump had business dealings or other direct correspondence with Russian governmental officials and Russian entities prior to his presidency. The question remains whether Trump borrowed money from Russian financial entities. 

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Supreme Court arguments continue to spiral on around a scene that is madly wound around the 2016 election collusion investigations and corresponding chaos. This week Michael Flynn’s charges have been dismissed for lies he allegedly told to Vice President Mike Pence concerning his conversations with Russian diplomats.

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