Dem on tax returns request: Trump 'least transparent president in half a century'

Rep. Dan KildeeDaniel (Dan) Timothy KildeeDemocratic lawmaker says Trump isn't 'leaving us any choice' on impeachment Democratic lawmaker says Trump isn't 'leaving us any choice' on impeachment On The Money: Judge rules banks can give Trump records to House | Mnuchin pegs debt ceiling deadline as 'late summer' | Democrats see momentum in Trump tax return fight | House rebukes Trump changes to consumer agency MORE (D-Mich.) defended Ways & Means Committee Chair Richard NealRichard Edmund NealOn The Money: DOJ offers legal opinion backing refusal to release Trump tax returns | Centrist Democrats raise concerns over minimum wage | Trump bashes Powell ahead of crucial Fed meeting | Design leaks for Harriet Tubman bill Justice releases legal opinion backing Treasury's refusal to release Trump tax returns Justice releases legal opinion backing Treasury's refusal to release Trump tax returns MORE’s (D-Mass.) authority to request President TrumpDonald John TrumpDC board rejects Trump Hotel effort to dismiss complaint seeking removal of liquor license on basis of Trump's 'character' DC board rejects Trump Hotel effort to dismiss complaint seeking removal of liquor license on basis of Trump's 'character' Mexico's immigration chief resigns amid US pressure over migrants MORE’s tax returns Sunday, calling Trump the “least transparent president in half a century.”

Contrary to language used by Trump’s attorneys in a letter to the Internal Revenue Service Friday, Neal’s request is “not a Pandora’s box” and derives from “legitimate authority,” Kildee told ABC’s George Stephanophoulos.

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"We are looking very carefully right now as to whether or not the IRS is properly auditing and enforcing tax law on the President of the United States, and we’re considering legislative changes to that end,” Kildee said on ABC’s “This Week.”

“It is not up to President Trump to determine whether or not this coequal branch of government has the tools available to it to make the deliberations necessary in order to make policy.”

Kildee added that the American public “has a right to know whether the president’s interests are impacting the decisions that he makes” and telling Stephanophoulos Trump has “broken 50 years of tradition” by not releasing his returns.

“The president and the Congress [have] legitimate authority, the question is whether we’re using that authority for legitimate purposes,” Kildee said. “Anybody who knows Donald Trump should be concerned about his abuse of authority.”

On Friday, an attorney for Trump wrote that Neal could not legally request Trump's tax returns until the IRS receives an opinion from the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel.

On Sunday, acting White House Chief of Staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyOn The Money: Pelosi says no debt ceiling hike until deal on spending caps | McConnell pressures White House to strike budget deal | Warren bill would wipe out billions in student debt | Senate passes IRS reform bill On The Money: Pelosi says no debt ceiling hike until deal on spending caps | McConnell pressures White House to strike budget deal | Warren bill would wipe out billions in student debt | Senate passes IRS reform bill New poll finds little GOP support for spending cuts to specific federal programs MORE said Democrats will "never" see the tax returns.