On The Money: Trump says he won't give up tax returns | Likely Dem chair vows to subpoena | Stocks rally on Dem House takeover | Tough midterm for many GOP tax writers

On The Money: Trump says he won't give up tax returns | Likely Dem chair vows to subpoena | Stocks rally on Dem House takeover | Tough midterm for many GOP tax writers
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THE BIG DEAL--Trump says he will refuse to release tax returns as long as they are under audit: President TrumpDonald TrumpMore than two-thirds of Americans approve of Biden's coronavirus response: poll Sarah Huckabee Sanders to run for governor Mexico's president tests positive for COVID-19 MORE on Wednesday said he won't turn over his tax returns as long as they are under audit, setting up a potential fight with Democrats who are expected to demand the documents once they assume the majority in the House.

At a press conference at the White House, Trump was asked if he would comply with expected Democratic requests for his tax returns.

"They're under audit. They have been for a long time," Trump said, claiming that the documents are "extremely complex" and that people "wouldn't understand" them.

"If I were finished with the audit, I would have an open mind to it," Trump added. "When that happens, if that happens, I would certainly have an open mind to it."


The background:

  • The president broke with decades of precedent when he opted not to release his tax returns during the 2016 presidential campaign.
  • He has repeatedly claimed they are under audit, and therefore cannot be released, though the IRS has said that audits don't preclude people from releasing their own tax information.

The power play: Democrats are expected to demand Trump's tax returns at the start of the next session of Congress after winning back the House majority in Tuesday's midterms.

Under federal tax law, the chairmen of congressional tax committees can request tax returns from the Treasury Department and review them in a closed session before voting to make all or parts of the returns public.

Rep. Richard NealRichard Edmund NealJudge says Treasury must give Trump 72 hours before releasing tax info to Democrats Trump's lawyers seek clarity about how tax-return case will proceed following Biden inauguration IRS says start of tax filing season delayed until Feb. 12 MORE (D-Mass.), who's expected to become chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee in January, said Wednesday that he expects the panel to request President Trump's tax returns.


What comes next: The decision on whether to release Trump's tax returns would fall to Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinBiden can hold China accountable for human rights abuses by divesting now Pence delivers coronavirus task force report to Biden Treasury imposes additional sanctions on Cuba over allegations of 'serious human rights abuse' MORE.

Mnuchin told The New York Times earlier this month that he would work with the department's general counsel and the general counsel for the IRS to address any requests should Democrats win the House.

If the Trump administration refuses to provide Democrats with the tax returns, or stalls in providing them, the matter could end up in court.



Many authors of GOP tax law will not be returning to Congress: Many of the House Republicans who were on the powerful Ways and Means Committee when the GOP passed its tax-cut law last year will not be returning to Congress in 2019.

Half of the 24 Republicans who served in 2017 on the Ways and Means panel -- which has jurisdiction over health and trade issues in addition to taxes -- will not be back in the House next year, according to election results as of 10 a.m. Wednesday

Four GOP members of the committee are projected to lose their races: Reps. Peter Roskam Peter James RoskamPostcards become unlikely tool in effort to oust Trump Bottom line Lobbying world MORE (Ill.), Erik PaulsenErik Philip PaulsenMinnesota Rep. Dean Phillips wins primary Pass USMCA Coalition drops stance on passing USMCA Two swing-district Democrats raise impeachment calls after whistleblower reports MORE (Minn.), Carlos CurbeloCarlos Luis CurbeloThe Memo: Historic vote leaves Trump more isolated than ever The Memo: GOP and nation grapple with what comes next House Hispanic Republicans welcome four new members MORE (Fla.) and Mike Bishop (Mich.). Roskam, Paulsen and Curbelo represent districts that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden must wait weekend for State Department pick Texas Supreme Court rejects Alex Jones request to toss lawsuits from Sandy Hook parents Paris Agreement: Biden's chance to restore international standing MORE won in 2016, while Bishop's district went for President Trump by single digits. The Hill's Naomi Jagoda breaks it down here.


Stocks open with solid gains after Dems win House: U.S. stocks rose Wednesday as trading opened for the first time since Democrats clinched control of the House in Tuesday's midterm elections.


The Dow Jones Industrial average opened roughly 200 points higher, while the Standard and Poor's 500 and Nasdaq composite started Wednesday with gains of 0.88 percent and 0.82 percent each.

The Dow closed with a gain of 545 points (Up 2.13 percent), the S&P closed 58 points higher (2.12 percent) and the Nasdaq finished up 195 points (2.64 percent).

Voters in two red states approve minimum wage hikes: Voters in two red states -- Arkansas and Missouri -- approved ballot measures to raise the minimum wage.

Together the ballot measures will lead to raises for more than 1 million workers. The Arkansas measure will incrementally raise the minimum wage from the current level of $8.50 to $11 by 2021. In Missouri, the wage will rise in stages from $7.85 to $12 by 2023. The Hill's Niv Elis tells us more here.


SEC hits Citibank with $38.7 million fine: Citibank is agreeing to pay $38.7 million to settle SEC charges it improperly handled what are known as "pre-released" American Depositary Receipts (ADRs).

"ADRs – U.S. securities that represent foreign shares of a foreign company – require a corresponding number of foreign shares to be held in custody at a depositary bank," according to the agency.

But the SEC alleged that Citibank had given brokers ADRs even when the brokers and their customers did not have the required number of foreign shares.


"Our charges against Citibank are the latest in our ongoing investigative effort to hold accountable Wall Street institutions that participated in an industry-wide fraud," Sanjay Wadhwa, senior associate director of the SEC office in New York, said in a release. "Our investigation into these practices has revealed that banks and brokerage firms profited while ADR holders were unaware of how the market was being abused."

Citibank did not admit or deny the SEC's charges but will pay the $38.7 million settlement, which includes $13.5 million in penalties.