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Biden administration 'evaluating and discussing' position on Trump tax returns

The Biden administration on Wednesday said that it still needs more time to determine how it plans to handle House Democrats’ request for former President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump: McConnell 'helpless' to stop Biden from packing court Romney on NRSC awarding Trump: Not 'my preference' McConnell sidesteps Trump calling him 'dumb son of a b----' MORE’s tax returns.

In a court filing, Department of Justice (DOJ) lawyers said that incoming leadership at the department and at the Treasury Department “have been evaluating and discussing” their position.

“Because the transition to new leadership at both agencies is still ongoing, Defendants require additional time to complete this process,” DOJ lawyers wrote.

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The administration requested that the parties in the lawsuit over House Democrats’ request file another status report on April 2.

DOJ lawyers said they would not object to Judge Trevor McFadden, a federal district court judge in Washington, D.C., appointed by Trump, extending his order through April 2 that requires Treasury to give Trump’s personal lawyers 72 hours notice before providing the former president’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee. 

Trump’s lawyers said in Wednesday’s court filing that they agreed with DOJ’s approach.

Lawyers for the Ways and Means Committee said that any additional time given to the administration to determine its position “should be limited, given how long the Committee’s request has been stymied.”

McFadden scheduled a teleconference in the case for April 1 in light of the panel's concerns. He extended his order requiring 72 hours notice until that date, and asked the parties in the lawsuit to file a status report by March 31. 

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealDemocrats offer competing tax ideas on Biden infrastructure Top Democrat calling for expansion of child care support DOJ asks for more time to make decision on turning over Trump taxes MORE (D-Mass.) in 2019 requested six years of Trump’s personal and business tax returns from the IRS. Treasury and the IRS rejected the request, prompting the committee to file a lawsuit against the agencies. Trump is also participating in the case in his personal capacity.

The Biden administration could choose to take a different approach to House Democrats’ request and provide them with Trump’s tax returns. So far, the administration has been cautious about weighing in on the matter, as it works to fill key positions at Treasury and DOJ.

Updated 6:31 p.m.