Top Republican offers resolution following Trump tax return lawsuit

Rep. Kevin BradyKevin Patrick BradyLawmakers under pressure to pass benefits fix for military families How centrist Dems learned to stop worrying and love impeachment On The Money: Senate passes first spending package as shutdown looms | Treasury moves to roll back Obama rules on offshore tax deals | Trade deal talks manage to weather Trump impeachment storm MORE (R-Texas), the top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, introduced a resolution on Tuesday in response to House Democrats' lawsuit over President TrumpDonald John TrumpPence: It's not a "foregone conclusion" that lawmakers impeach Trump FBI identifies Pensacola shooter as Saudi Royal Saudi Air Force second lieutenant Trump calls Warren 'Pocahontas,' knocks wealth tax MORE's tax returns.

The lawsuit, filed last week, was authorized by the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group — a group of top lawmakers that is currently majority Democratic. Brady's resolution would instead require the full House to authorize committees' judicial proceedings.

House Democrats are unlikely to give Brady's resolution a floor vote. Nonetheless, Brady said his resolution is valuable.


"I think it's important that we restore the voice of the House," Brady told reporters. "It was a historical mistake and a fatal flaw for Democrats to circumvent a pretty important process."

He added that because Democrats didn't hold a committee vote and House vote on the tax-returns lawsuit, "it certainly weakens if not fatally flaws their lawsuit."

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealOvernight Health Care: House to vote next week on drug prices bill | Conway says Trump trying to find 'balance' on youth vaping | US spent trillion on hospitals in 2018 Democrats could introduce articles of impeachment next week House to vote next week on sweeping bill to lower drug prices MORE (D-Mass.) brought the lawsuit after the Treasury Department and IRS rejected his requests and subpoenas for six years of Trump's personal and business tax returns. The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in D.C., asks a judge to order Treasury and the IRS to comply with the requests and subpoenas.

The lawsuit was filed after the House last month passed a resolution along party lines to allow House committees to initiate judicial proceedings to enforce their subpoenas if they are authorized to do so by the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group.

Neal says that he wants to obtain Trump's tax returns because the Ways and Means Committee is interested in oversight and legislation related to how the IRS audits presidents. But Brady in a statement called Democrats' efforts to obtain Trump's tax returns a "political fishing expedition to expose the President’s private tax information."


When asked about Brady's resolution on Tuesday, Neal said he didn't have any thoughts about it.

"Members can bring up their resolutions," he said.

Neal was also asked about legislation New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signed on Monday that would allow him to request Trump's state tax returns. Neal said that he's talking to his lawyers about the New York law but reiterated that he's not likely to seek Trump's state tax returns.

"So far the attorneys have been pretty clear that they don't think that it's applicable in a manner that's currently being discussed," Neal said.