return icon Vietnamnet.vn

US Supreme Court to rule on revealing Trump tax returns

The court will test claims from President Trump's lawyers he enjoys total immunity while in office.

The US Supreme Court is set to decide whether President Donald Trump's tax returns and other financial records can be examined by Congress and prosecutors - a ruling with potentially huge political consequences.

Mr Trump refuses to share documents concerning his fortune and business.

His lawyers argue he enjoys total immunity while in office.

The ruling will test that claim and has implications on how far US lawmakers can scrutinise the president.

Even a ruling in Congress's favour would not necessarily make Mr Trump's tax returns public before his bid for re-election in November. 

Mr Trump, who made his money as a property developer, is the first president since Richard Nixon in the 1970s not to have made his tax returns public.

He calls the investigation into his tax affairs a "witch hunt" and sees the congressional case as a device to harass him politically.

Why has this gone to the Supreme Court?

Two Democrat-controlled House of Representatives committees and New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance - also a Democrat - are demanding the release of his tax returns and other information.

The subpoenas - orders to hand over evidence - were issued last year to Mazars USA, who are Mr Trump's accountants, and to major Trump lenders Deutsche Bank and Capital One.

Lower courts in Washington and New York ruled against the president in all cases, but those decisions have been put on hold pending a final court ruling.

  • Trump loses court case to keep tax returns secret
  • Five claims in Trump niece's tell-all book
  • Trump tax returns 'will never be released'

Deutsche Bank was one of the few banks willing to lend to Mr Trump after a series of corporate bankruptcies in the 1990s, and the documents sought include records related to the president, the Trump Organization and his family.

The banks and the accounting firm said they would release the information if ordered.

Mr Trump's lawyers argued that Congress had no authority to issue the subpoenas, and no valid justification to seek the records.

Why is it sensitive politically?

Damaging revelations about President Trump's financial affairs could hurt is campaign for re-election. He has already slumped in opinion polls, as critics accuse him of mishandling the coronavirus crisis.

The New York investigation covers alleged hush money payments made by Mr Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen to two women - adult film star Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal - who both say they had affairs with Mr Trump.

Such payments could violate campaign financing laws. The president denies the affairs took place.

Concerns have already been raised about possible conflicts of interest in Mr Trump's businesses.

At hearings in May there was fierce debate among the Supreme Court judges over the degree to which Congress should scrutinise the president's personal records.

In the New York case, they were sceptical about a Trump lawyer's argument that a president cannot be investigated while in office.

This is despite the court having a 5-4 conservative majority and including two Trump appointees - Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.

In two earlier cases over presidential power, in 1974 the Supreme Court acted unanimously in requiring President Nixon to surrender White House tapes in the Watergate scandal, and 1997 it allowed a sexual harassment lawsuit to go ahead against President Bill Clinton.

Judges appointed by Mr Nixon and Mr Clinton voted against them in the cases. BBC

MORE NEWS

Ministry listens to firms' difficulties, pledges to raise support

The Ministry of Planning and Investment will propose policies to remove obstacles for enterprises and enable them to seize opportunities to accelerate production and business, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung said.

Vietnam's e-government procurement system set to launch in August

The e-GP would allow effective and transparent management of the public procurement process.

VIETNAM BUSINESS NEWS JUNE 29

Newly-established businesses in H1 exceed 70,000

Australian Foreign Minister enjoys Pho ga in Hanoi

Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong enjoys Hanoi's specialty of Pho ga or chicken noodles as she arrived in the city on her first visit to Vietnam.

Vietnamese ceramic artist sets two Guinness World Records

Two Vietnamese ceramic works will be recognised as having set Guinness World Records at a ceremony in Hanoi today (June 30).

VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES JUNE 29

USAID assists Vietnamese businesses to reduce greenhouse gas emission

Vietnam Airlines plans to restore its entire flight network by the end of 2023

The restoration of international flight routes is an important condition for Vietnam Airlines to reduce losses and become profitable in the near future.

Saigon Zoo elephant dung used to make paper

A Saigon Zoo member of staff and a group of students are transforming elephant dung into paper.

Future of Hanoi’s 120-year-old Long Bien Bridge unclear

Long Bien Bridge, the iconic bridge across Hanoi’s Red River, has degraded, but no major repair plan has been finalized and its future is unclear.

Information & Communications Ministry works to create modern digital infrastructure

The Ministry of Information and Communications will exert efforts to create a modern and safe national digital infrastructure, and a new space for digital economic growth, and developing e-government towards the building of a digital government.

Vietnamese NA Chairman begins official visit to UK

National Assembly (NA) Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue arrived at Heathrow Airport in London on June 28 (local time), beginning his three-day official visit to the UK.

Vietnam to establish industrial environmental index

The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) has called for the implementation of an industrial environmental index in Vietnam, according to Le Thanh Quan, head of MPI's department of economic zone management.

Rising costs cast doubt on wood companies growth prospects

As wood export turnover is rebounding with rising demand in the domestic market, the revenues of wood enterprises are expected to advance.

Vietnam’s GDP expands 7.72% in second quarter of 2022

Vietnam’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the second quarter of this year was estimated to increase 7.72% year-on-year, higher than the growth rates in the same quarters during the 2011-2021 period.

Danish Crown Prince Couple to visit Vietnam in November

Wind energy and energy efficiency will be in focus during the visit, which will take place on November 1-2.
back_to_top