John Kennedy: Richard Neal has 'ulterior motive' in requesting tax documents

John Kennedy: Richard Neal has 'ulterior motive' in requesting tax documents

John Kennedy: Richard Neal has 'ulterior motive' in requesting tax documents

Under significant pressure from progressive advocacy groups, Democratic Rep. Richard Neal on Wednesday formally requested President Donald Trump's tax returns-setting the stage for what many expect to be a lengthy legal battle.

Though Congressional Democrats have been clamoring for Trump's business and personal tax returns since reclaiming a majority in the House in January, Neal downplayed the political implications of his request in a Wednesday statement.

"Is that all?" Trump asked when told Neal had request six years of his tax returns.

Administration officials have been studying ways to minimize the economic impact of a potential closure in case Trump went through with his threat, including keeping trucking lanes open or closing only certain ports.

Asked again later Thursday for his response to Neal's demand, Trump didn't provide a direct answer. "They'll speak to my lawyers". Trump's personal tax returns are likely under audit, but it's not exactly what you suspect. Republicans have denounced it as a political witch hunt and invoked privacy concerns.

A possible closure of the Mexico-U.S. border to stop the flow of migrants as suggested by U.S. President Donald Trump would benefit neither Mexico nor the United States, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Wednesday. "Weaponizing our nation's tax code by targeting political foes sets a unsafe precedent and weakens Americans' privacy rights".

Trump has also been accused, notably by his former attorney Michael Cohen, of both deflating and over estimating the value of his properties and assets in insurance claims and on loan applications - a practice on which tax returns could shed light. Treasury officials are not going to comply with the request until they are compelled to do so.

"Now, we're under audit despite what people said".

He has said that the returns would answer the question of whether the president was financially beholden to Russian Federation, and how he personally would benefit from the Republican tax bill he signed into law. "On behalf of the American people, the Ways and Means Committee must determine if that policy is being followed, and if so, whether these audits are conducted fully and appropriately". The committee is also requesting tax returns from eight of the president's business entities. He previously claimed early last month, according to The Washington Times, that he would release his own returns "down the road", but his returns have yet to surface.

Neal's request is specific and under the section of the IRS code that he is using only he, and not other chairmen of House committees can see the returns.

A spokesman for Mnuchin didn't respond to requests for comment.

"This [six-year] period gives us a good window into the president's activities and the IRS enforcement during the period before he became a candidate, the two years that he was a candidate, and then the last two years where he's been President of the United States", Kildee, D-Mich., told ABC News.

"We're politicizing the tax system", Woodall said.

Neal has set April 10 as the deadline for the IRS to fulfill the request.

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