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Top Court Remands Trump Subpoena Case Ahead of Schedule (1)

July 17, 2020, 8:07 PM

The U.S. Supreme Court cleared lower courts to move ahead in a clash over a grand jury subpoena for President Donald Trump’s financial records, formally returning the case to the appeals court level ahead of schedule.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance had asked the justices not to wait 25-plus days, as they normally do after issuing an opinion. The court ruled on July 9, rejecting Trump’s claim of sweeping immunity while leaving open the possibility he could raise more specific objections in the lower courts.

Vance told the Supreme Court that Trump consented to the fast-track request. In his order for the court, Chief Justice John Roberts indicated the decision was based at least in part on Trump’s agreement.

Lower courts had already been moving forward in the case, and the Supreme Court action confirms that those proceedings can go forward. Trump told a federal trial judge Wednesday that he will continue to challenge the New York grand jury subpoena.

The justices haven’t acted on a similar request from House Democrats in a different case they decided the same day. Trump is opposing that bid.

The rulings were a mixed bag for Trump. The court set aside two appeals court rulings that would have given House Democrats access to Trump’s financial records. But the justices also rejected Trump’s contention that sitting presidents have an absolute shield against state grand jury subpoenas while in office. That cleared the way for Vance to pursue Trump’s tax returns and other financial records.

(Adds Roberts’s reasoning in third paragraph.)

To contact the reporter on this story:
Greg Stohr in Washington at

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Joe Sobczyk at

Elizabeth Wasserman, Ros Krasny

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

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