Attorneys for President Donald Trump asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to let him keep his tax returns secret, setting up a case that could determine whether any president has blanket criminal immunity while in office.
The case also marks the first time the president’s personal financial dealings have made their way to the nation’s top court.
If the justices agree to consider the case, it will pave the way for a landmark dispute over the reach of presidential immunity in the midst of the 2020 presidential campaign and a historic impeachment battle in Congress.
The court could also decline to hear the case, effectively requiring the disclosure of Trump’s returns. In the filing, the president’s counsel Jay Sekulow emphasized the importance of hearing the matter.
“Every time a President has asked the Court to review an unprecedented use of legal process against the occupant of the office, it has done so,” he wrote.
It takes four justices to vote to hear a case.
I would put the chances of the four horseman of the legal apocalypse refusing to vote to grant cert on this as roughly between zero and less than zero.
This is also a good estimate of the odds that they rule against Trump on the substantive question. So it’s all going to come down to Roberts, who is the only one of the Federalist Society Five who ever even seems to consider the question of how many divisions the SCOTUS has.
(BTW one of the first agenda items of any Democratic president/Congress should be to require that the tax returns of all federal elected [eta: and appointed, h/t Chet Murthy] officials be public. That they aren’t already is a scandal all by itself).