Topline: In response to a subpoena for his tax returns, President Trump filed suit against the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr., and also Trump’s own long-time accounting firm, Mazars USA, in an effort to prevent the firm from handing over the president’s records.
- Trump filed a federal lawsuit on Thursday, first obtained by CNN, which alleges that Vance is conducting a criminal investigation of him (the Constitution prohibits any prosecutor from investigating a sitting president for criminal wrongdoing, Trump claims in the suit).
- The lawsuit called Vance’s subpoena to Mazars “a bad faith effort to harass the President by obtaining and exposing his private financial information, not a legitimate attempt to enforce New York law.”
- Jay Sekulow, Trump’s lawyer, said in a statement on Thursday that the lawsuit would address the “significant constitutional issues at stake in this case.”
- Vance’s office had subpoenaed Trump’s tax returns in August as part of a probe into hush-money payments made to two women, Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, during the 2016 election. Trump has strongly denied both affairs.
- A spokesman for Vance’s office, Danny Frost, said in response to the lawsuit, “We have received the plaintiff’s complaint and will respond as appropriate in court. We will have no further comment as this process unfolds in court.”
Key background: Trump’s new lawsuit is one of several that he’s filed to prevent the release of his tax returns or other financial records. Trump filed a lawsuit against Mazars to stop them from complying with a House Oversight Committee subpoena back in April. He then sued the House Ways and Means Committee and New York State in July, to block them from using a new law to share his tax returns with Congress.