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Grassley statement on treasury’s response to Trump tax return request

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa, one of two members of Congress with 6103 requesting authority, today issued the following statement regarding Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s response to House Democrats’ request for President Donald Trump’s tax returns.

“Secretary Mnuchin is right to consult with the Department of Justice before responding more fully. House Democrats’ unprecedented request has serious implications for all Americans and requires serious, careful analysis. The purpose of Section 6103 of the tax code is to protect taxpayer privacy. It’s not meant to be used as a partisan tool by politicians to reveal a political opponent’s private information. That’s not a legitimate use of congressional authority and would set a dangerous precedent that can’t be undone. Americans didn’t elect their members of Congress to go to Washington to try to dig up harmful information on their political opponents. It should be alarming to every American that there are attempts by elected officials to weaponize the IRS for partisan political purposes.

Last week, Grassley gave a speech on the Senate floor outlining his opposition to efforts to politicize the IRS, noting, “Democrats have also made a big deal out of the fact that under section 6103, the Secretary of the Treasury ‘shall’ turn over relevant tax records to the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee if he requests them. That’s exactly right. As long as the Committee has a legitimate legislative purpose in asking for them. For decades, the courts have been clear that Congressional requests for information like this must have a legitimate legislative purpose.”

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