The next chapter in the legal battle over President Donald Trump’s tax returns will begin sooner than anticipated.
On Friday, the Supreme Court ordered that last week’s decision against Trump take effect immediately.
Trump had argued that his tax records and personal and corporate financial information could not be disclosed because he was immune from prosecution while in office.
In general, Supreme Court rulings take about 25 days to go into effect, the New York Post reported.
However, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. wanted that sped up.
“Each day that compliance with the Mazars Subpoena is delayed increases the likelihood that the grand jury will not receive the documents it sought ten months ago in a timely fashion,” he wrote the court in urging that the decision go into effect immediately.
Vance has said that the tax returns are necessary as he investigates alleged hush-money payments prior to the 2016 election.
The Manhattan district attorney also fears that the clock is ticking on a subpoena issued in September that could become void if it is delayed in the courts so long that it passes the statute of limitations.
Vance said a delay could grant Trump the “absolute temporary immunity that this court rejected.”
Trump’s team did not fight the court ruling, putting the decision into effect immediately.
The Supreme Court’s decision last week meant that Trump still can fight the case at the lower court level, and opens the door for his legal team to make new arguments in the district court, as SCOTUSblog reported.
After the initial Supreme Court ruling, Jay Sekulow, a lawyer for Trump, said in a statement that Trump’s defense “will now proceed to raise additional constitutional and legal issues in the lower courts.”
During a hearing last week, attorney William Consovoy, representing Trump, called the subpoena “wildly overbroad” and raised the issue of possible political motivation by Vance, a Democrat, according to The Times.
Consovoy said Vance should be forced to reveal more information about his investigation, saying it was unfair to challenge the subpoena without knowing “at least some information about its nature and scope.”
“Our strategy seeks due process,” Sekulow told The Times.
Legal sparring over the terms of the subpoena could mean that Vance will not get Trump’s taxes until after the November elections.
“What the president’s lawyers are seeking here is [a] delay,” Carey Dunne of the district attorney’s office said, according to The Hill.
“I think that’s the entire strategy. Every day that goes by, the president wins the type of absolute temporary immunity he’s been seeking in this case, even though he’s lost on that claim before every court that’s heard it, including now the Supreme Court,” he said.
Trump’s lawyers have until July 27 to raise challenges to the subpoena in the district court.
CORRECTION, July 19, 2020: The Western Journal revised the wording of two sentences in this article to clarify the implications of the remanding of this case to district court.
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