President Donald Trump filed a lawsuit against Attorney General Letitia James, the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means, and Commissioner of the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Michael Schmidt over the passage of New York’s TRUST Act that would allow state officials to access the president’s tax returns, if they were already requested by the federal government.
Trump filed the lawsuit as a private citizen in federal court in Washington, D.C. It called the new law unconstitutional and alleges that it is part of a campaign to reveal his private information for political gain.
“President Trump has spent his career hiding behind lawsuits, but, as New York’s chief law enforcement officer, I can assure him that no one is above the law — not even the president of the United States,” James said in a statement on Tuesday.
“The TRUST Act will shine a light on the president’s finances and finally offer transparency to millions of Americans yearning to know the truth. We have all the confidence that this law is legal and we will vigorously defend it against any court challenge.”
Signed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and enacted July 7, the TRUST Act, allows New York tax officials to turn over Trump’s state returns to the three House committees, provided they receive requests citing a “specified and legitimate legislative purpose.”
Trump asked the court to block James and tax commissioner from exercising the law. He argues that House lawmakers have “no legitimate legislative purpose” to seek the state returns as the committees jurisdiction is limited to federal taxes.