A House Democratic lawmaker attempted to force a House floor vote on a resolution to request Donald Trump’s tax returns last night, but the effort failed on a party-line vote, 229-185, with two Republicans voting “present.”
The two Republicans who voted present were North Carolina Rep. Walter Jones and South Carolina Rep. Mark Sanford. Sanford is one of the Republican lawmakers who has in the past called for Trump to release his returns.
After the vote, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi fired back at the GOP, saying:
“Tonight, House Republicans made themselves accomplices to hiding President Trump’s tax returns from the American people. Our security and our democracy have been endangered by Russia’s clear influence on the Trump Administration. The American people deserve the truth about Russia’s personal, political and financial grip on President Trump. If there’s nothing there, then what are Republicans afraid of?”
New Jersey Rep. Bill Pascrell offered a resolution that would have directed the House to request 10 years of Trump’s tax returns, have the House Ways and Means Committee review them in a closed session and then vote to send the information in the returns to the full House.
Under federal tax law, the chairmen of the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees and the Joint Committee on Taxation can request tax returns from Treasury to be considered in a closed meeting.
The resolution would also direct the House to “support transparency in government and the longstanding tradition of Presidents and Presidential candidates disclosing their tax returns.”
Pascrell read the text of his resolution on the House floor Monday evening, drawing a standing ovation from other Democratic lawmakers.
“Let’s shine a bright light on the president’s conflicts together,” Pascrell said after the bill was read. “We as a Congress and the broader American public can judge whether his decisions are being made for himself, his business interests, or for the greater good of the American people.”
— Ways and Means Dems (@WaysMeansCmte) February 28, 2017
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