Pascrell Files Bill to Get Trump Personal and Business Tax Returns
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (NJ-09), a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, introduced a Resolution of Inquiry directing the Secretary of the Treasury to submit President Trump’s tax returns for tax years 2006 through 2016, as well as tax return information for 515 of President Trump's business entities, to the House of Representatives.
"We know that the tangled web of the President’s potential conflicts cannot be understood without a full picture of his business empire. And with the Congress scheduled to consider tax reform, requesting the returns of the President and his business interests should be the first order of the day," Rep. Pascrell said. “I look forward to the Committee considering this resolution, giving my colleagues another chance to get it right. Given that he has not fully divested, we have the responsibility to examine Mr. Trump’s network of businesses, and to understand the deductions and loopholes the President uses. We must ensure that White House policy-making is not being done in service to the President’s personal financial advantage, and we must determine whether there are conflicts of interest or violations of any federal laws. We must untangle this mess."
The Resolution of Inquiry also requests from the Treasury Secretary tax information from Mr. Trump and his businesses, including (1) details of debts held by foreign governments and foreign companies; (2) investments in foreign countries and foreign enterprises; and (3) use of any tax shelters, corporate structures, tax avoidance maneuvers, abatements, or other loopholes to reduce or eliminate tax liability.
Obtaining Mr. Trump’s tax returns would allow for much-needed Congressional oversight of potential conflicts of interest and foreign influence over the President. Reviewing these returns is an even more urgent need in light of the Administration’s intention to move forward on tax reform.
Rep. Pascrell's Resolution of Inquiry is part of the House Democrats' package of inquiries that have been filed in various committees. He also filed a Resolution of Inquiry for President Trump's tax returns in March, which was voted down 24-16 in the Ways and Means Committee.
A Resolution of Inquiry is a legislative tool that has privileged parliamentary status, meaning it can be brought to the House Floor if the Committee hasn’t reported it within 14 legislative days, even if the Majority leadership has not scheduled it for a vote. Once introduced, the Committee must schedule a Markup, which means there has to be debate and the Committee must vote on the Resolution. The Committee can report the Resolution "unfavorably" after Markup to prevent it from going to the floor, but otherwise it can be raised for a vote before the full House of Representatives.
The full text of the Resolution of Inquiry PDF here.