Trump Tells Judge He Will Keep Fighting Vance Tax Subpoena
(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump told a judge he will continue to challenge a grand jury subpoena seeking his tax filings after the U.S. Supreme Court said he is not immune from investigation.
The high court ruled last week against Trump’s attempt to block a subpoena from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. to the Mazars accounting firm, saying the president did not have absolute immunity from state grand jury investigations. The case was sent back to a federal judge in Manhattan with the instruction that Trump could raise objections that any recipient of a subpoena might advance.
The filing on Wednesday, a joint status report by Trump and Vance, reveal the two opposing strategies in the battle over the subpoena.
The president said he may want to litigate numerous issues, including “why the state wants the information; why and how much the state needs the information, including whether the State could obtain the information elsewhere; and whether compliance with the subpoena would unduly burden or interfere with a president’s official duties.” He wants to be able to explore facts that will go to Vance’s motives.
Vance, on the other hand, is calling on the court to move expeditiously and with the understanding, as the Supreme Court said last week, that Trump stands “in nearly the same situation” as any other individual confronting a prosecutor’s subpoena.
Both sides say Trump can file his additional claims by July 27 and they ask for a court conference on Aug. 5.
The litigation is likely to add weeks or months of delay to when Vance will receive Trump’s tax filings, possibly until after the November election. His office is barred by grand jury secrecy laws from making the information public.
Vance is investigating hush-money payments made before the 2016 presidential election to Stormy Daniels, a porn actress who claims she had an affair with Trump. U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero is holding a hearing on Thursday.
In the court filing, Trump’s team said they may claim the subpoena is too broad, that it was motivated by a desire to harass the president, that it was issued as an act of political retaliation, or that it would interfere with his constitutional duties.
In a related move, Vance on Wednesday asked the Supreme Court to move to formally return the case to the New York court as soon as possible.
“Expeditious proceedings before the district court to promptly resolve this case are essential to prevent frustration of the grand jury’s ongoing investigation,” he said in the filing.
©2020 Bloomberg L.P.