President Donald Trump’s efforts to conceal his tax returns from Congress are undermined by a legal memo from his own administration, The Washington Post reported Tuesday after obtaining the document.
“A confidential Internal Revenue Service legal memo says tax returns must be given to Congress unless the president takes the rare step of asserting executive privilege,” the newspaper reported. “The memo contradicts the Trump administration’s justification for denying lawmakers’ request for President Trump’s tax returns, exposing fissures in the executive branch.”
The president has instructed Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to stonewall the requests from the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA).
The 10-page memo says turning over the documents “is mandatory, requiring the Secretary to disclose returns, and return information, requested by the tax-writing Chairs.”
“[T]he Secretary’s obligation to disclose return and return information would not be affected by the failure of a tax writing committee … to state a reason for the request,” it declares.