The state of New York began a criminal investigation into the Trump organization after allegations arose that they had cheated on their taxes. The district attorney for Manhattan, Cyrus Vance, secured a grand jury subpoena for President Trump’s tax returns and business records in order to determine whether his company broke the law.
President Trump has argued he has absolute immunity. He believes he is immune from any lawsuit or investigation launched by a state because he is president, even if the state wants to investigate actions he took before taking office. He also argues that the states cannot subpoena third parties, like his accountants, because doing so will distract him from doing his job.
But presidential inaugurations are not monarchical coronations. President Trump is not a king. Like everyone else, he must bow before the law. Becoming president does not shield him from investigations into past events. The American people have entrusted him with immense power, not freed him from the responsibility to follow the law. That responsibility is shared by everyone, from the ordinary citizen to the president of the United States.