April 13 To the Editor:
26 U.S. Code Section 6103(f)(1) States: “Upon written request from the chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives, the chairman of the Committee on Finance of the Senate, or the chairman of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Secretary (of the Treasury) shall furnish such committee with any return or return information specified in such request, except that any return or return information which can be associated with, or otherwise identify, directly or indirectly, a particular taxpayer shall be furnished to such committee only when sitting in closed executive session unless such taxpayer otherwise consents in writing to such disclosure.”
The law is crystal clear. This law provides no exemptions to any person, including the President. The law does not require the committee to state any reason or justifications for their request. The law does not provide an exemption for any return under audit by the IRS. The only requirement is that the committee receiving the return or return information must do so in closed executive session, unless the taxpayer otherwise consents to an open disclosure.
Despite the clarity and specificity of this law, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has delayed meeting the request of Rep. Richard Neal, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. He requested and was granted an extension until April 23 to comply. Despite the clarity of this law, White House Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney has stated that “Congress will never see Trump’ taxes.”
Why are Mr. Trump and his allies so concerned about releasing his tax returns? Did not Mr. Trump promise to release his taxes after the election? Obviously there must be information within these returns that would be very damaging and embarrassing to Trump. As with the full Mueller Report, and now his taxes, for a man who so strongly proclaims his total innocence of any wrongdoing or unethical behavior, his actions to conceal information from Congress and the American people seems more applicable to a person with a great deal of incriminating information to keep secret.
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