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Judge says accounting firm must hand over Trump financial records

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Judge says accounting firm must hand over Trump financial records
An accounting firm must hand over some of former President Donald Trump's personal financial records to a House committee investigating him for possible violations of the Emoluments Clause. File Photo by Tasos Katopodis/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 11 (UPI) -- A federal judge on Wednesday ruled that an accounting firm must hand over some of former President Donald Trump's personal financial records to a House committee investigating him.

U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta of the District of Columbia ruled in favor of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform's subpoena seeking the 2017 and 2018 records from Mazars USA. The judge, however, narrowed the scope of the panel's request, limiting it to information regarding Trump's lease with the General Services Administration for Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.

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The committee is investigating whether Trump's personal business profited from his role as president, violating the Emoluments Clause in the Constitution.

Mehta, though, rejected the committee's request to obtain a greater portion of Trump's personal financial records, saying there wasn't legislative need.

"The more Congress can invade the personal sphere of a former president, the greater the leverage Congress would have on a sitting president," Mehta wrote.

In July 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the desire to shape law in government oversight wasn't simply enough to justify congressional subpoenas seeking a president's financial information. The court urged lower courts to be more careful in their consideration of the balance of the executive and legislative branches.

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