Despite the Supreme Court’s ruling last week that his tax information cannot be blocked, the president’s lawyers plan to file a complaint before July 27 in New York.
Donald Trump seems willing to fight to the end – and beyond – to prevent his past financial and fiscal record from ending up in the hands of the New York City prosecutor’s office. Last week, the Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision that the president of the United States cannot block the release of such information, which is being sought by a grand jury that is investigating him. The ruling, of great political significance, delimited presidential power; just as it did decades ago in the Watergate and Monica Lewinsky cases, respectively. Now, the Republican defense team plans to file a complaint challenging the subpoena.
According to a letter quoted by Reuters, lawyers for the business tycoon president said on Wednesday that they will seek an injunction by July 27. Cyrus Vance, the Manhattan district attorney handling the case, said that most of the arguments have already been rejected by the Supreme Court; but, even so, he will not seek compliance with the subpoena, which the high court ordered last week, until July 27. Judge Victor Marrero has scheduled a hearing for Thursday.
The New York case involves hush money payments which Trump made before the November 2016 election to silence two women who claimed to have had extramarital sex with Trump. The judges were supposed to rule on a similar subpoena, stemming from several requests for information by the House of Representatives, but in this case, they sent the matter back to the lower courts.
The New York district attorney has supboenaed eight years’ worth of personal and corporate tax returns to clarify whether Trump manipulated the accounts of the Trump Organization in order to conceal payments to a pornographic movie actress who goes by the stage name Stormy Daniels. Trump reimbursed his personal attorney at the time, Michael Cohen, for those payments. Cohen was also involved in a financial deal with Playboy model Karen McDougal.
Although the subpoenas were served on Trump’s auditor, the Mazars group, it was Trump who sued to quash the subpoena, claiming that he was protected by presidential immunity from service. “No citizen, not even the president, is categorically above the common duty to produce evidence when called upon in a criminal proceeding,” said Chief Justice John Roberts, who wrote the opinion.