Trump Lawyers Prep for Tax Return Fight10/16 06:19
NEW YORK (AP) -- President Donald Trump's lawyers said Tuesday they'll
immediately go to the Supreme Court if an appeals court in New York agrees that
his tax returns can be released to state prosecutors.
The lawyers notified the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan of
the urgency hours before Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. filed
written arguments insisting the president is not above the law.
The appeals court on Oct. 23 will hear oral arguments in Trump's challenge
to a judge's decision tossing out his lawsuit seeking to block a subpoena of
his tax returns since 2011. The records were sought from Trump's accounting
firm for a criminal probe by Vance that stems in part from the Trump
Organization's involvement in buying the silence of two women who claimed to
have had affairs with the president.
The 2nd Circuit would likely rule quickly, which is why Trump's lawyers
sought early notification of their plans to appeal and the need to prevent the
records from being turned over before they have a chance to do so.
A spokesman for Vance declined comment. But hours later, Vance filed papers
with the 2nd Circuit to support his position, saying his criminal investigation
"is proceeding based upon information derived from public sources, confidential
informants and the grand jury process."
He said the subpoena to Trump's accountant calls for financial and tax
records of entities and individuals, including Trump, who engaged in business
transactions in Manhattan.
According to the papers, the records being sought relate to business and
financial matters unrelated to any official acts by Trump and primarily relate
to the time-period before he became president.
On Friday, Trump's lawyers filed papers with the 2nd Circuit, saying the
Constitution prohibits states from subjecting the U.S. president to criminal
process while he is in office.
"Tellingly, until now, no state or local prosecutor has ever initiated
criminal process against a sitting President," they wrote.
Also Friday, U.S. Justice Department lawyers in Washington urged the 2nd
Circuit to reverse the findings of the lower court, saying Vance must prove
"particularized need" for the records before they are released to a grand jury.
"It is not difficult to imagine that a federal court decision permitting a
local grand jury to take the unprecedented step of subpoenaing the President's
personal records would open the door to additional, burdensome requests," the
They added that the subpoena of Trump's personal records raises substantial
Constitutional "concerns that the court's perfunctory analysis entirely failed