Dec 13, 2019

Supreme Court to decide on release of Trump’s financial records

President Trump. Photo: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI / Contributor/Getty Images

The Supreme Court agreed on Friday to take on three cases involving President Trump's finances to determine whether he can block the release of his records.

Why it matters: The court's ruling could give the American public a look at the president's finances after he has gone to great lengths to keep them under wraps.

The big picture: The court's decision could undermine Trump's argument that he is immune from criminal investigations while in office — an argument his lawyers have used in response to requests for his tax returns and financial records, per the New York Times.

How we got here: In one of the cases being examined, Trump asked the Supreme Court in November to keep his longtime accounting firm, Mazars USA, from turning over his tax returns to the Manhattan district attorney.

  • In another case, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in early December that Deutsche Bank and Capital One must comply with a congressional subpoena for Trump, his children and his company's financial records.
  • Trump has filed at least three lawsuits to block the release of his tax returns. The president, his family and his company also filed a lawsuit against Deutsche Bank to block the financial institution from complying with congressional subpoenas.

Read the Supreme Court order:

Go deeper: Trump intends to take tax return fight to Supreme Court

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Trump and McConnell continue to transform the federal judiciary

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

After three years in office, President Trump and the Republican-held Senate have installed a total of 187 judges to the federal bench, with Trump nominees now making up one in four U.S. circuit court judges, according to an analysis by the Washington Post.

Why it matters: Trump's transformation of the federal judiciary will ensure that it maintains a conservative tilt for decades, likely affecting future progressive legislation and priorities no matter the outcome of next November’s election.

Go deeperArrowDec 22, 2019

In historic ruling, Dutch court orders nation to cut emissions

A climate activist holding a placard in front of the Supreme Court in the Netherlands, where demonstration is restricted. People from several climate organizations gathered with eyes painted on their hands symbolising 'We are watching you.' Photo: Barcroft Media / Contributor/Getty Images

The Supreme Court in the Netherlands on Friday ordered the government there to cut national greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by the end of 2020.

Why it matters: This is the first time the courts have ever forced a country to address climate change and could set a precedent for courts in other nations, including the United States, in the absence of other action.

Go deeperArrowDec 20, 2019

Supreme Court won't revive Boise's ban on outdoor sleeping

Tents sheltering homeless people line a residential street in Los Angeles. Photo: Getty Images

The Supreme Court let stand on Monday a lower court ruling that blocked a Boise, Idaho, law intended to prevent homeless people from sleeping and camping in public places when the city's shelters are full, per Bloomberg.

The big picture: The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled that cities cannot enforce criminal penalties against people for "an unavoidable consequence" as it would constitute cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth Amendment. Cities and municipalities have expressed dismay at the original ruling, as Boise's lawyers argued that public encampments "threaten the lives and well-being both of those living on the streets and the public at large."

Go deeper: Trump claims homelessness is "destroying" San Francisco

Keep ReadingArrowDec 16, 2019