Pelosi aide: Dems 'will take all necessary steps' to get Trump's tax returns

Pelosi aide: Dems 'will take all necessary steps' to get Trump's tax returns
© Greg Nash

House Democrats have "legitimate" reasons to obtain President TrumpDonald John TrumpMueller report findings could be a 'good day' for Trump, Dem senator says Trump officials heading to China for trade talks next week Showdown looms over Mueller report MORE's tax returns and "will take all necessary steps" to get their hands on them, Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiPelosi, Dems plot strategy after end of Mueller probe Coons after Russia probe: House Dems need to use power in 'focused and responsible way' Trump, Congress brace for Mueller findings MORE's (D-Calif.) office said Friday.

“Every day the American people and Congress learn more about President Trump’s improprieties, from conflicts of interest to influence peddling, potential tax evasion and violations of the Constitution – all roads leading back to President Trump’s finances," Pelosi spokeswoman Ashley Etienne said in a statement. "These improprieties, and the lack of transparency around them, give the House legitimate legislative, oversight and legal reasons to review the President’s tax returns."

"We will take all necessary steps, including litigation, if necessary, to obtain them," she added. "Given President Trump’s recalcitrance, the committees with jurisdictional and legislative equities are working with the Ways and Means Committee to ensure the House is able to present the strongest possible case.”

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Pelosi's office issued the statement two days after Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen testified before the House Oversight and Reform Committee about Trump's alleged past business practices.

Cohen said during his testimony Wednesday that Trump would undervalue his assets to reduce his real estate tax bill, but inflate the value of his assets to boost his rankings on Forbes's lists of wealthiest people and for insurance purposes.

Cohen also cast doubt on whether Trump's tax returns were under audit during the 2016 presidential election.

Trump has long said he doesn't want to release his returns because of an audit, though the IRS has said that audits don't prevent people from releasing their own tax information.

The statement from Pelosi's office is one of the strongest to date from Democratic leadership about plans to try to obtain the president's tax filings.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealOn The Money: Liberal groups pressure Dems over Trump's tax returns | Top Trump economist says tax cuts powering economy | Trump Jr. slams Theresa May over Brexit delay | Watchdog warns of 'rosy' assumptions in Trump budget Liberal groups step up pressure on Dems to request Trump's tax returns The retirement crisis is real MORE (D-Mass.) has said he plans to request the returns but has said he wanted to build a case first because the matter is likely to result in a lengthy court battle.

A provision in the federal tax code allows Neal to request anyone's tax returns from the Treasury Department and review them in a closed session. The committee could then vote to send a report to the full House that could make tax return information public.