Executive Summary: Essentially Prznint Stupid lost both cases 7-2, which is pretty resounding defeat.
THIS IS A YUGE VICTORY! It is now adjudicated that NO president has a right to absolute immunity while in office. And that part of the decision was unanimous.
However, both cases are remanded to lower courts to resolve so… litigation continues and it is unlikely that we will see Trump’s Taxes before the election unless… drip-drip-drip. –TG
Tiger Beat’s morning email thingie sums up what these cases mean:
If House Democrats win, voters could get a rare look into the president’s finances ahead of the 2020 election; and if Trump wins, he can yet again declare victory over an opposition party that has employed nearly every tactic at their disposal to get their hands on the sensitive documents. Either way, the decision is almost certain to set precedents for congressional and other investigations that target an incumbent president.
Anyway, there are 2 cases:
- Trump v. Vance is about a grand jury subpoena from Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance to Trump’s accountant, Mazars.
- Trump. v. Mazars consolidates four House subpoenas to Mazars and Deutsche Bank and tests Congress’ authority to get information it wants.
Our publishing schedule is gonna be weird this morning.
Trump v Vance: opinion by John Roberts 7 – 2 “”Given these safeguards and the Court’s precedents, we cannot conclude that absolute immunity is necessary or appropriate under Article II or the Supremacy Clause. Our dissenting colleagues agree,” the chief writes. Tump loses!
“Rejecting a heightened need standard does not leave Presidents with ‘no real protection.’ To start, a President may avail himself of the same protections available to every other citizen.”
Trump v Mazars: Opinion by Roberts, 7 – 2 The question presented, Roberts writes, is whether the subpoenas issued exceed the authority of the House under the Constitution… The chief rejects the “demanding standards” proposed by the president and the solicitor general. But, he says, the House’s approach “fails to take adequate account of the significant separation of powers concerns raised by congressional subpoenas for the President’s information.”
The Court has vacated the decisions below in Mazars, and it holds that congressional subpoenas may be enforceable but that the courts below did not take account of all the possible separation of powers concerns. The case will this go on. So this issue is back in the hands of the DC and Second Circuits for now.
“…this is basically a Goldilocks approach. The test proposed by the president and the SG is too tough. The House test is too lax. The court outlines a set of “special considerations” that the courts should take into account on remand and sends the cases back to the lower courts for further consideration. So I am going to take back my suggestion that this is more of a win for the president than Vance — I think it’s basically the same. In this set of cases and the Vance case, we are going to have more litigation, and no one is going to see any financial documents any time soon.” [emphasis mine – TG]
Also: no justices announced retirements. Sorry Conspiracy Theorists!