On The Money: Treasury rejects Dem subpoena for Trump tax returns | Companies warn trade war about to hit consumers | Congress, White House to launch budget talks next week | Trump gets deal to lift steel tariffs on Mexico, Canada

On The Money: Treasury rejects Dem subpoena for Trump tax returns | Companies warn trade war about to hit consumers | Congress, White House to launch budget talks next week | Trump gets deal to lift steel tariffs on Mexico, Canada
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Happy Friday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Niv Elis, filling in for Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL--Treasury rejects Dem subpoena for Trump tax returns

Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinThe Hill's Morning Report - Crunch time arrives for 2020 Dems with debates on deck Trump's tax returns — DOJ trying to put off the inevitable? GOP lawmakers want Mulvaney sidelined in budget talks MORE on Friday defied a subpoena from House Democrats for President TrumpDonald John TrumpConway defends herself against Hatch Act allegations amid threat of subpoena How to defuse Gulf tensions and avoid war with Iran Trump says 'stubborn child' Fed 'blew it' by not cutting rates MORE's tax returns, a move that's likely to trigger a court battle for the documents.

"We are unable to provide the requested information in response to the Committee's subpoena," Mnuchin said in a letter to House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealTrump's tax returns — DOJ trying to put off the inevitable? Democrats talk up tax credits to counter Trump law House panel approves bills on tax extenders, expanding tax credits MORE (D-Mass.).

Mnuchin reiterated in the letter that Treasury has determined that Neal's request "lacks a legitimate legislative purpose."

What's next? Both Mnuchin and Neal have said they think the dispute will be decided in the courts. Neal told reporters hours before Mnuchin sent his letter that Democrats "will likely proceed to court as quickly as next week."

In a statement issued after Mnuchin rejected the subpoena, Neal said he is "consulting with counsel on how best to enforce the subpoenas moving forward."

How we got here: Neal last week issued subpoenas for six years of Trump's personal and business tax returns -- 2013 to 2018 -- after Mnuchin rejected the chairman's request for the documents under a statute that states that the Treasury Secretary "shall furnish" tax returns requested by the chairpeople of congress's tax-writing committees, so long as information associated with any specific taxpayers is reviewed in a closed session.

Mnuchin and IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig had been given a deadline of 5 p.m. on Friday to produce the tax returns sought in the subpoenas.

Neal said in Friday's statement that the subpoenas should not have been needed in the first place because Treasury should have complied with his earlier requests.

Both sides dig in: Democrats argue that the documents are needed for a legitimate legislative purpose. Neal stated in his initial request for the tax returns that the Ways and Means Committee is conducting oversight and is considering legislative proposals relating to how the IRS audits presidents.

But Mnuchin argued in a previous letter that Democrats' main goal is to expose a political rival's tax returns. In his letter Friday, Mnuchin said that Treasury remains committed to providing the Ways and Means Committee with more information about the IRS's process for conducting mandatory audits of presidents.

The Hill's Naomi Jagoda has the details and more on what's next here.

And click here to read Mnuchin's letter rejecting the Dem subpoena

 

LEADING THE DAY – Companies warn Trump trade war about to hit consumers

U.S. companies are speaking out against President Trump's escalating trade war with China, with major players such as Walmart saying tariffs are forcing them to raise prices on consumer goods for Americans.

The price hikes could complicate things for Trump as the 2020 campaign picks up. The president has repeatedly asserted that China, and not U.S. consumers, would pay the price of the trade war.

"There are some places where, as we get tariffs, we will take prices up," Walmart Chief Financial Officer Brett Biggs said Thursday in an earnings call.

Macy's CEO Jeff Gennette issued a similar warning, saying another round of tariffs would almost certainly hit consumers in their pocketbooks.

High stakes: Trump has imposed tariffs on China in stages, starting in July when he targeted $50 billion of imports. He later added $200 billion of goods to the list.

Last week he raised tariffs from 10 percent to 25 percent on the $200 billion of goods, and on Monday threatened to impose tariffs on the remaining $300 billion of goods imported into the U.S. from China.

Retailers say they have bent over backwards to avoid increasing prices up until now, but that the latest round has left them with few options.

I have more on the warnings and what they mean here.

 

Trump gets deal to lift steel, aluminum tariffs on Mexico, Canada: The U.S. has reached a deal to lift steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada and Mexico, removing a significant roadblock of congressional approval of President Trump's revision of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Trump alluded to the deal in remarks to the National Association of Retailers in Washington, D.C., saying he hoped it would benefit U.S. industries and lead to the passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

"That deal is going to be a fantastic deal for our country, and hopefully Congress will approve the USMCA quickly and then the great farmers, and manufacturers and steel plants will make our economy even more successful than it already is, if that's possible," Trump said.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin TrudeauJustin Pierre James TrudeauDanny Green: Raptors visiting Trump White House a 'hard no' Moving into emergency mode on climate change Iranian general says US was warned several times before drone was shot down MORE said the deal could return the countries toward a relationship of cooperation.

The move marks an evolution in Trump's trade policy, seeking common ground with partners while ratcheting up pressure on China. But there's more!

  • Trump also decided to hold off on imposing auto tariffs for up to six months amid ongoing negotiations with Japan and the European Union.
  • Trump also decided to backtrack on steel and aluminum tariffs on Turkey last night, bringing them back down to 25 percent.
  • Markets had a bumpy ride Friday, falling on news that Chinese officials were pessimistic about a deal, recovering on Trump's steel announcement, and then dropping again before closing down for the day.

Jordan Fabian and I have more details on the deal to lift the steel and aluminum tariffs here.

 

Budget talks ahead: The top four congressional leaders of both parties are expected to meet with White House officials next week to discuss a two-year budget deal, a pair of sources confirmed Friday.

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiThis week: Congress set for clash on Trump's border request Judd Gregg: An Irish friend and wisdom Juan Williams: Warren on the rise MORE (D-Calif.), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyGOP rep: Trump needs to retaliate against Iran to deter other hostile nations Ocasio-Cortez: McCarthy should apologize to migrant children separated from their parents Lawmakers warn of 'grave situation' after drone shot down MORE (R-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden, Eastland and rejecting the cult of civility California governor predicts 'xenophobic' GOP will likely be third party in 15 years This week: Congress set for clash on Trump's border request MORE (R-Ky.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerMcConnell-backed Super PAC says nominating Roy Moore would be 'gift wrapping' seat to Dems McConnell vows to 'vigorously' oppose Moore's Senate bid Pelosi: Trump delay on Harriet Tubman is 'an insult to the hopes of millions' MORE (D-N.Y.) will kick off talks as deadlines to avoid another government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling loom this fall.

Acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyThe Hill's Morning Report - Crunch time arrives for 2020 Dems with debates on deck This week: Congress set for clash on Trump's border request GOP lawmakers want Mulvaney sidelined in budget talks MORE and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are expected to attend, but the meeting has not been formally scheduled as of Friday afternoon, according to an aide.

A congressional source added that Hill leadership had agreed to meet with Mnuchin and other administration officials to discuss the budget caps on defense and non-defense spending.

Cristina Marcos and Jordan Fabian have more for you here.

 

Latest on disaster relief negotiations: Congressional Democrats are offering to include billions in humanitarian assistance tied to the U.S.-Mexico border in a disaster aid package as negotiators inch closer to a deal.

A House Democratic aide said they've given Republicans "a thoughtful offer" that would include part of the administration's request for emergency border funding, including the White House's push for humanitarian assistance.  

"Democrats recognize that there are serious humanitarian needs at the border," the aide said. "We gave Congressional Republicans a thoughtful offer to address those needs."

The White House's request for an additional $4.5 billion in emergency border funding had been one of the final remaining hurdles to getting a deal on the stalled disaster aid bill.

Jordain Carney and I have some more of the details here.

 

ON TAP NEXT WEEK

Monday:

  • The Bipartisan Policy Center holds an event with former Small Business Administration Administrator Karen Mills entitled "A Conversation with Karen Mills: Fintech, Small Business, and the American Dream," 5:30 p.m.

Tuesday:

  • House Appropriations Committee marks up fiscal 2020 Energy and Water, Defense bills. 10:30 a.m.

Wednesday:

  • House Appropriations Committee marks up fiscal 2020 Commerce, Justice, Science, and Interior, Environment bills. 10:30 a.m.
  • Interior Secretary David Bernhardt testifies before Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior and Environment.
  • CAP Ideas conference.

Thursday:

  • The House Ways and Means Committee holds hearing on maternal mortality. 10:00 a.m.
  • House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure holds hearing on public transit.  10:00 a.m.

 

GOOD TO KNOW

  • The House is expected to vote next week on a bill aimed at encouraging retirement savings.
  • Consumer confidence reached a 15-year high in April as U.S. adults feel more optimistic about the prospects of the U.S. economy than in any year since 2004.