Sara Avery | Staff Writer
President Donald Trump might have to hand over his personal and corporate tax returns for the state of New York after a federal judge blocked his request to keep them hidden.
United States District Judge Victor Marrero dismissed the lawsuit, saying that President Trump’s claims of immunity from criminal investigations oppose the constitution. According to CBS News, the decision could result in the president releasing eight years’ worth of tax returns to Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr., who is investigating allegations of hush money being paid to women who have claimed to have had affairs with President Trump.
“The truth will come out,” said Alea Hudson, an HU sophomore criminology major from Edgewater, Maryland. “All his lies over the years are starting to unravel, and he’s going to get caught up.”
For now, the president will not have to submit his returns as his lawyers appealed the verdict and received a temporary stay of decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, according to official court documents. If the court decides to continue proceedings, according to CNBC, the released tax documents could also provide insight into Trump’s income.
However, the returns potentially being granted to Vance does not mean that they will become public.
According to CNN, the president’s lawyers have stated that they believe the investigation is politically motivated, because Vance is a Democrat, and that the investigation needs to be stopped since a president should be immune from criminal probes so long as he holds the office.
President Trump expressed his opinion about the situation by tweeting, “The Radical Left Democrats have failed on all fronts so now they are pushing local New York City and State Democrat prosecutors to go get President Trump.”
The judge’s ruling comes as the threat of impeachment continues to increase after a second whistleblower has come forward, corroborating the story of the first. The initial whis- tleblower ignited the impeachment inquiry by bringing evidence that the President attempted to use Ukrainian leaders to investigate Joe Biden. The president and his administration have adamantly advocated their innocence and have continuously stated that they will not cooperate with house democrats during the proceedings, unless “the rules are fair,” according to CNN.
“Of course, he wants to fight it off as long as he can,” said Las Vegas native and HU sophomore journalism major Ciara White-Sparks. “He wants to keep his presidency, and if he’s impeached, he’ll be done.”
Phone calls and personal public statements made by President Trump have become the key evidence that congressional investigators have focused on to ascertain whether the president behaved unethically, in a quid pro quo.
“The actions taken to date by the president have seriously violated the constitution,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a televised news conference last month announcing the official impeachment inquiry. “He must be held accountable. No one is above the law.”
According to CNN, Trump has defied the constitution more than once during his presidency, including disregarding immigrant’s rights to due process, profiting from the presidency, and obstructing justice. If President Trump is found guilty of committing impeachable offenses, outlined by the constitution as “high crimes and misdemeanors,” then the Senate will hold a hearing in which a majority two-thirds must vote for a conviction. If that majority is reached, the worst thing the Senate can do is remove the president from office, but they cannot press criminal charges, although he is subject to face charges later. If the majority is not reached, then the president can remain in office and continue governing. In both the impeachment inquiry and the tax return investigation, President Trump has maintained that he did nothing wrong and that these are attempts to slander his character.