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A Victory for Trump in Tax Return Fight

Victory in California as president sues Manhattan DA
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 19, 2019 11:31 AM CDT
Updated Sep 19, 2019 4:42 PM CDT
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President Donald Trump tours a section of the southern border wall, Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019, in Otay Mesa, Calif.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – A federal judge on Thursday handed President Trump a victory in his effort to keep his financial information secret, siding with his campaign's effort to block a California law aimed at forcing him to release his tax returns, the AP reports. The ruling by US District Judge Morrison England Jr. comes as the president faces multiple Democratic-led efforts to force him to reveal his returns. Also Thursday, Trump sued to block New York prosecutors from their push to obtain the returns as part of a criminal investigation. England, an appointee of former Republican President George W. Bush, plans to issue a written ruling by Oct. 1, and California is expected to appeal. The law signed by Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom in July says candidates for president must release five years of tax returns by November to run in the California primary, which is scheduled for March 2020.

Attorneys for Trump and the Republican Party argued the law violates the US Constitution by adding an additional requirement to run for president. England also seemed open to their argument that a federal law requiring presidents to disclose financial information supersedes state law. Meanwhile, Trump asked a federal judge to block the effort by Manhattan district attorney Cyrus R. Vance, who recently subpoenaed the president's accounting firm for eight years of Trump's state and federal returns. Vance also subpoenaed the Trump Organization for records related to payments that former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen helped arrange to porn actress Stormy Daniels, who claimed she had an affair with Trump. Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow tells the AP the lawsuit is intended "to address the significant constitutional issues at stake in this case."

(Read more Trump tax return stories.)

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