This morning Trump is touting a huge victory he won against California over their new law that would have force him and other candidates to release their taxes in order to be on the ballot in the state primary elections:
I won the right to be a presidential candidate in California, in a major Court decision handed down yesterday. It was filed against me by the Radical Left Governor of that State to tremendous Media hoopla. The VICTORY, however, was barely covered by the Fake News. No surprise!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 2, 2019
Here’s what the judge wrote about the California law via the LA Times:
He wrote that “allowing individual states to potentially adopt disparate and inconsistent qualifications for presidential primary candidates tramples the framers’ vision of having uniform standards for the qualifications of those individuals running for president.”
The judge’s written ruling repeated a concern expressed during oral arguments — that long-standing and less stringent federal financial disclosure rules preempt any additional mandates. Even then, England wrote, there’s no basis to believe claims made by state attorneys that the disclosure of tax returns is tantamount to minor requirements that have previously been allowed by the courts.
“At base, the Act seeks to punish a class of candidates who elect not to comply with disclosing their tax returns by handicapping their access to the electoral process. This is plainly impermissible,” wrote England, who was appointed to the federal bench by President George W. Bush in 2002.
California plans to appeal the ruling:
California’s chief elections officer said Tuesday he will appeal a federal judge’s order to block a law that would require President Trump to release his tax returns for access to the state’s primary election ballot.
The decision by Secretary of State Alex Padilla came just hours after U.S. District Judge Morrison England Jr.’s ruling became final. England made a tentative ruling almost two weeks ago to block the new California law.
“California will appeal this ruling and we will continue to make our thorough, thoughtful argument for stronger financial disclosure requirements for presidential and gubernatorial candidates,” Padilla said in a statement. “Our elected leaders have a legal and moral obligation to be transparent with voters about potential conflicts of interest. This law is fundamental to preserving and protecting American democracy.”
I have little doubt that they will find a judge to overturn England’s ruling. But I expect when it’s all said and done, England’s ruling will be vindicated and the law won’t stand.