Federal judge sides with House Democrats over subpoena for Trump’s financial records

Fox News | 5/20/2019 | Gregg Re
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Most of President Trump's income came from his properties, making $247 million from his golf and other resort clubs; Fox Business Network's Edward Lawrence reports from Washington.

A Washington, D.C.-based federal judge has sided with House Oversight Committee Democrats seeking to enforce their subpoena of Trump accounting firm Mazars USA, in a major ruling that breathes new life into Democrats' ongoing efforts to probe the president's financial dealings.

Subpoena - Access - Slew - Trump - Documents

The subpoena seeks access to a slew of Trump financial documents dating back to 2011, including personal records and records of various affiliated business and entities. Democrats pursued the subpoena after former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen testified to Congress in February that the president's accountants routinely and improperly altered his financial statements -- including some signed by Mazars -- to misrepresent his assets and liabilities.

Barack Obama-appointed judge Amit P. Mehta's 41-page opinion began by comparing President Trump's concerns about congressional overreach to those of President James Buchanan, asserting that Trump "has taken up the fight of his predecessor."

Mehta - Likelihood - Documents - House - Democrats

And Mehta acknowledged a high likelihood that any documents obtained by House Democrats would quickly leak, and become partisan political fodder.

"[T]he court is not naïve to reality," Mehta wrote, admitting there "is a chance that some records obtained from Mazars will become public soon after they are produced."

Mehta - Case - Records - Business - Affairs

Mehta added that he was "well aware that this case involves records concerning the private and business affairs of the President of the United States," dating back to well before he declared his candidacy.

A letter to House Judiciary Chair Rep. Jerry Nadler accuses Democrats of trying to pursue an unauthorized 'do-over' of the investigation; Catherine Herridge reports from Washington.

Mehta - Democrats - Subpoena - Investigative - Oversight

But, Mehta said, Democrats' subpoena fell within established congressional investigative and oversight powers, which generally only require that subpoenas serve some "valid legislative purpose." The judge noted that the probe could uncover...
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