Trump's financial records targeted in new push from Democratic-led House committee: report
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump talks to reporters as he and his wife Melania Trump arrive for a New Year's Eve celebration with members and guests at the Mar-a-lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, U.S. December 31, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

According to a report from the Guardian, the chairman of a powerful Democratic-led committee is making a renewed push to access Donald Trump's taxes with a plan to not only investigate the former president, but also allow his financial documents to become public.

The Guardian's Hugo Lowell writes that Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), who heads the House Oversight Committee, is pushing forward and asking a federal judge to allow her committee to have the documents that have previously withheld.

According to the report, Maloney's move, "marks the latest salvo from Democrats in their years-long pursuit to secure Trump's tax records and related documents, in a case testing the scope and limits of Congress's oversight authority," with the report adding, "If successful, the committee would be a step closer to obtaining Trump's tax records and potentially making them public."

A filing made to the U.S. district court for the District of Columbia from Douglas Letter, the general counsel for congressional Democrats, reads: "While the committee's need for the subpoenaed information has not changed, one key fact has: plaintiff Donald J Trump is no longer the president."

"Because he is no longer the incumbent, the constitutional separation-of-powers principles that were the foundation of the supreme court's recent decision are significantly diminished," Letter added.

According to the Guardian's Lowell, "Prosecutors with the Manhattan district attorney's office in New York obtained the former president's tax records in March, just hours after the supreme court denied his last-ditch attempt to keep them concealed. But, as they are part of a law enforcement investigation, they have not so far been released."

Last summer the Supreme Court blocked access to the documents on separation of powers ground but now, with Trump out of office, Democrats claim circumstances have changed and they should be granted their request.

"If the committee is ultimately successful, it could pave the way for Trump's tax returns to one day become public, since Congress is not restricted by grand jury secrecy rules that bar the Manhattan district attorney's office from releasing the documents except as evidence at a trial," the Guardian report adds.

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