Judge dismisses Trump's lawsuit against New York over tax returns

Cheryl Sanders
November 13, 2019

Judge Carl Nichols of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that his court wasn't the appropriate authority to hear the case, leaving open the choice which Trump sue NY officials rather.

He added that "if Mr. Trump alleged that either New York Defendant was involved in the legislative process, he cites no authority for the proposition that enacting or helping to enact a state statute in another state would constitute "transacting business" in the District of Columbia".

PHOTO: President Donald Trump and first Lady Melania Trump listen to Taps during a Veterans Day event at Madison Square Park in New York City, Nov. 11, 2019.

"But speculation that they might occur is insufficient to exercise jurisdiction over the Commissioner now", Nichols wrote. He has yet to file a request for the documents and is now engaged in a legal battle over the federal tax returns of President Trump. The suit sought an injunction to block the application of a NY state law that could allow the Democratic-controlled House to obtain the returns.

Neal has demonstrated little interest in making use of the law though, to the consternation of many liberals, for fear that it could undermine his own separate lawsuit for Trump's federal returns.

Mr. Trump has also sued the House Ways and Means Committee, the panel seeking the documents.

On Monday, Nichols concluded the latter, dismissing the NY state defendants and giving Trump the option of refiling his lawsuit against them in his home state, effectively setting the seven-day clock running, if the House were to ask for Trump's returns.

Effectively, the ruling is a loss for Trump but a less significant one then the blows other courts have dealt him in cases involving Democrats' pursuits of his financial records.

And despite Nichols kicking the case to NY, his ruling Monday may not end the lawsuit before the judge.

Trump's attorney, Jay Sekulow, said he was reviewing the ruling.

US District Judge Carl Nichols in Washington, D.C. said he lacked jurisdiction over Letitia James, the attorney-general, and Michael Schmidt, commissioner of the state's Department of Taxation and Finance. A judge has not yet ruled on that case.

"Mr. Trump does not allege that either New York Defendant had any involvement whatsoever in the legislative process that led to the TRUST Act".

Nichols originally asked Trump, the committee and the NY officials to work things out among themselves.

Nichols agreed, and noted in his opinion that Trump had recently changed his residency to Florida. Judge Carl Nichols ruled that the case mostly involves NY state law, so his Washington, DC, court isn't the place to consider it.

The decision is likely to increase pressure on Neal to make use of the NY law.

"We have no oversight over New York State taxes", Neal said.

Other reports by iNewsToday