Manhattan D.A. Can Obtain Trump’s Tax Returns, Judges Rule

Donald Trump lost another round in his interminable fight to keep his tax returns private as a federal appeals court ruled that Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. can enforce a subpoena for them.

The court rejected Trump’s argument that the subpoena should be blocked because it was too broad and amounted to political harassment by Vance, a Democrat. Today’s ruling marks the fifth time that courts have ruled against the president since Vance first issued the subpoena for his personal and business tax returns in August 2019.

Vance is seeking the records as part of his office’s inquiry into potential criminal activity by Trump. While the district attorney has not revealed the entire scope of his investigation, court papers indicate that they are looking at a range of potential crimes, including tax and insurance fraud and falsification of business records.

Trump has offered up a number of arguments as to why he shouldn’t have to comply with the subpoena, the most astounding of which is that, as a sitting president, he’s immune from criminal investigation. The Supreme Court rejected that claim in July but told him he could challenge the subpoena on other grounds. He did exactly that, but U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero rebuffed him in August, writing in his opinion that “justice requires an end to this controversy.” That set up the hearing before the appeals court.

Legal observers fully expect Trump to continue to try to shield the true state of his finances from public view by appealing today’s decision to the Supreme Court.

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