Wednesday evening summary
Jared Kushner’s security clearance was flagged by intelligence officers
Report: investigators say Barr softened Mueller report findings
Democrats diving deeper into Stephen Moore’s finances
Democratic senators have pressed Stephen Moore for detailed information on his finances over the past decade, after the Guardian revealed he owed $75,000 in federal taxes and was held in contempt of court over unpaid debts.
Moore, the economics commentator chosen by Donald Trump for a seat on the Federal Reserve’s board of governors, was warned in a letter that he may need to provide a full tax return to senators preparing to consider his nomination.
Senators Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Ron Wyden of Oregon, the ranking members of the Senate banking and finance committees, told Moore they had “read with concern” the Guardian’s reports, which Moore has called “vile and vicious and underhanded”.
Trump’s tax returns formally requested by House committee chair
House Democrats have formally demanded Donald Trump’s tax returns from the Internal Revenue Service, marking a major bid to obtain information about the president’s finances and business dealings.
Richard Neal, the chairman of the House ways and means committee, issued the request on Wednesday evening, stating: “It is critical to ensure the accountability of our government and elected officials.”
“I today submitted to IRS Commissioner [Charles] Rettig my request for six years of the president’s personal tax returns as well as the returns for some of his business entities,” Neal wrote.
“We have completed the necessary groundwork for a request of this magnitude and I am certain we are within our legitimate legislative, legal, and oversight rights.
“This request is about policy, not politics; my preparations were made on my own track and timeline, entirely independent of other activities in Congress and the administration,” he added.
“My actions reflect an abiding reverence for our democracy and our institutions, and are in no way based on emotion of the moment or partisanship. I trust that in this spirit, the IRS will comply with Federal law and furnish me with the requested documents in a timely manner.”
Trump refused to release his tax returns in the 2016 campaign – breaking with a nearly 40-year precedent of major-party presidential candidates.
In testimony before Capitol Hill last month, the president’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, alleged that Trump inflated his assets to banks and insurance companies.
Democrats are seeking Trump’s tax returns from 2013 to 2018.
GOP Senators use ‘nuclear option’ to fast-track Trump-appointed judges