Oregon Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden is calling on Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr to hold public hearings on President Donald Trump’s finances, accusing the committee of failing to adequately investigate the matter.
In a letter provided to CNN Wednesday, Wyden told Burr and the committee’s top Democrat, Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia, they should hold public hearings with those involved in Trump’s finances, including with Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen, his son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner, and his son Donald Trump Jr. Wyden, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee who also serves as ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, also called for a hearing with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, as the Oregon Democrat has unsuccessfully sought a range of records from the Treasury Department’s financial crimes unit.
“I do not believe … that the committee had adequately investigated these matters or that the Trump administration, and in particular, the secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin, has cooperated with congressional oversight,” Wyden wrote.
Last year, the Senate Intelligence Committee had planned to hold a public hearing with Cohen, but the panel shelved that plan and opted to meet with him privately. While Burr and Warner both said at the time that Cohen would return for a public hearing, the committee has yet to schedule one. Wyden has been a frequent critic of the intelligence panel for not investigating Trump’s finances, and Burr pushed back against him earlier this month.
“Nothing has precluded him from digging further than what we’ve dug,” Burr told CNN at the time. “We’ve had access to whatever financial records we asked for.”
Republican chairmen of a half-dozen committees have largely stayed away from digging into the President’s finances, including calls for subpoenaing Trump’s bank records, seeking his tax returns and probing his real estate deals. Some Republicans have said those are matters for special counsel Robert Mueller to investigate — and CNN reported Tuesday that Mueller’s prosecutors have been asking witnesses about Trump’s business activities prior to the 2016 presidential campaign.