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On The Money: Judge throws out Trump effort to block subpoena for tax returns | Jobless claims again rise to over 1 million | Fed alumni ask Senate to reject Judy Shelton

Happy Thursday and welcome back to On The Money. I’m Sylvan Lane, and here’s your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL—Judge throws out Trump effort to block subpoena for tax returns: A federal judge in New York on Thursday dismissed President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Memo: Obama enters battle, enraging Trump Harris pledges to fight for country’s ideals in accepting VP nomination Pelosi paints Trump and McConnell as twin impediments to progress MORE’s latest effort to stymie a New York grand jury subpoena for his tax returns and a trove of other financial documents.

The ruling by District Judge Victor Marrero relied heavily on the Supreme Court’s landmark decision last month that rejected Trump’s claim that presidents enjoy absolute immunity from criminal probes.

“That notion, applied as so robustly proclaimed by the president’s advocates, is as unprecedented and far-reaching as it is perilous to the rule of law and other bedrock constitutional principles on which this country was founded and by which it continues to be governed,” Marrero wrote.

The decision moves Manhattan prosecutors closer to obtaining Trump’s tax returns, though it’s unlikely the public will see them before the November election, according to legal experts.

The Hill’s John Kruzel explains here.

The background: The dispute over access to eight years of Trump’s financial documents, including his personal and corporate tax returns, arose after Cyrus Vance Jr., the Democratic district attorney for Manhattan, obtained a grand jury subpoena for Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars USA.

  • Vance’s office is looking into payments made to silence two women who allege they had affairs with Trump, including adult-film star Stormy Daniels, before he became president.
  • Additionally, Vance’s office hinted earlier this month that its subpoena is part of an investigation into “possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization,” including potential fraud allegations detailed in media reports in recent years.


VIRTUAL EVENT ANNOUNCEMENT: ON THE AGENDA: AFFORDABLE HOUSING — TUESDAY, AUGUST 25TH AT 1 PM EDT A place to call home has always been a basic need and yet the lack of safe, affordable housing remains an issue today. On the sidelines of the 2020 Republican Convention, The Hill will host discussions on what can be done to ensure all Americans have access to a safe and affordable home. Miami Mayor Francis SuarezFrancis SuarezTwo Florida mayors urge residents to wear masks at home GOP Miami mayor does not commit to voting for Trump Miami mayor says city ‘breaking record after record after record’ of coronavirus cases MORE, Mesa, AZ Mayor John Giles. and a panel of housing experts join The Hill’s Steve Clemons. RSVP for event reminders.


Jobless claims again rise to over 1 million: Initial jobless claims rose to more than 1 million for the week ending Aug. 15 after falling below that marker a week earlier, disappointing news that points to a more difficult economic recovery.

  • Last week’s claims report was the first to dip below 1 million after 20 weeks above that previously unprecedented level. Economists had expected the figure to fall from 963,000 to around 923,000.
  • The unadjusted data, which some economists say is more relevant during times of extreme unemployment, saw a 6.3 percent increase, coming in at more than 891,000.

The trend reversal is likely to raise questions as to whether the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic has stalled. The country continued to struggle with outbreaks and elevated levels of new cases as some schools and colleges return for in-person learning. The Hill’s Niv Elis has more here.

More than three dozen Fed alumni urge Senate to reject Judy Shelton: More than three dozen former Federal Reserve officials are urging senators to reject President Trump’s nomination of Judy Shelton to the central bank’s board of governors.

In an open letter published Thursday, 38 former officials of the Fed and its reserve banks asked senators to reject Shelton’s nomination to serve as one of the most influential U.S. economic policymakers.

“The Fed has serious work ahead of it. While we applaud the Board having a diversity of viewpoints represented at its table, Ms. Shelton’s views are so extreme and ill-considered as to be an unnecessary distraction from the tasks at hand,” the former Fed officials wrote.

The signatories include economists, attorneys and advisers that served the Fed’s board of governors in D.C. and several presidents and former senior officials of Federal Reserve banks.

I explain why they’re speaking out and what it could mean for Shelton here.



  • Airbnb announced new measures on Thursday capping house occupancy at 16 people and banning parties to address COVID-19 health concerns.
  • Op-Ed: Doug Bibby, president of the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC), outlines “How Congress can avoid a housing catastrophe”

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