Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) signaled Thursday that Democrats would pursue getting President Trump’s tax returns, arguing that Americans “overwhelmingly” support Congress reviewing the returns.
Asked by reporters during a press conference about whether she finds it important to obtain Trump’s taxes, Pelosi said that voters indicated strong support for investigating the president’s finances.
“I think overwhelmingly the public wants to see the president’s tax returns,” Pelosi told reporters. “They want to know the truth. They want to know the facts. And he has nothing to hide.”
When it came to a timeline for getting the returns, however, Pelosi said Democrats must be “careful” in pursuing the president’s taxes, pushing back on those demanding lawmakers take immediate action to obtain them.
“We have to be very, very careful as we go forward,” Pelosi said, addressing complaints that the new House majority is moving too slowly. “In terms of the tax returns, it’s not an issue of just sending a letter. You have to do it in a very careful way.”
Pelosi on Trump’s tax returns: “I was walking through a kitchen…& one of the ppl working said, ‘when the president says the Mueller investigation is going on too long, you just say back to him, not as long as your tax audit.’ I thought those were real words of wisdom.” pic.twitter.com/uvLLiveqY3
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 7, 2019
Pelosi’s comments follow criticism from some House members including Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), who co-chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus and told USA Today that she wants to see the House move “quickly” on the issue.
“I’d like to know exactly what that timeline looks like, but I don’t see why we’re not moving it quickly. They need to move that quickly,” Jayapal said this week.
Trump himself blasted reported plans by Democrats to seek his tax returns, warning in his State of the Union speech on Tuesday that “ridiculous partisan investigations” would cripple the country.
“If there is going to be peace and legislation, there cannot be war and investigation,” Trump said during his annual address to Congress. “It just doesn’t work that way!”
Trump became the first president in decades to not to release his tax returns, while Democrats have stepped up efforts to obtain the records.
The president has long claimed that he cannot release his taxes while they are under audit, though the IRS has said no individual is barred from personally releasing their own tax information.