Trump Must Turn Over Tax Returns, Democratic Lawmaker Says

(Bloomberg) -- Democratic Representative Bill Pascrell said a 1924 code gives the House Ways and Means panel oversight power over the executive branch and its officials, giving it authority to demand President Donald Trump hand over his tax returns.

Pascrell also said the Senate Finance Committee and Joint Committee on Taxation wield similar power in order to ensure what he called an “open administration.”

Democrats say they want to see Trump’s returns to be sure he’s complying with tax laws, to examine his financial connections abroad, and find out to whom he owes money.

“The law is on our side,” Pascrell, a member or Ways and Means, said during an interview on Bloomberg TV. “Every President since Richard Nixon has provided their tax returns and some have gone beyond what the request was.”

Although Trump warned Congress in his State of the Union on Tuesday that "there cannot be war and investigation" if lawmakers want "peace and legislation," House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff said Wednesday that Democrats are not intimidated.

Getting Trump’s tax returns -- and possibly releasing them to the public -- is just one of the many ways Democrats hope to wield their investigative power. Trump is being squeezed by Mueller’s probe, by federal prosecutors in New York looking into his inaugural spending, and by other House probes into possible ties with Russians during the campaign.

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