"No other secretary has ever told us the day before that they were going to limit their time", Waters said.
Mnuchin said he'd notified committee staff on Monday that he'd need to leave at 5 p.m. Fellow Democrat Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia echoed Wyden, urging Rettig to respond to the request for the president's tax returns "without any interference by the Treasury Secretary" or the White House.
IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig says his agency "anticipates" responding to congressional requests for President Donald Trump's tax returns amid growing pressure from House Democrats for transparency. I respect the committee, and we want to have a good working relationship with you.
Trump says he can not release the tax returns because he is under audit, and the administration has put up a united front aimed at blocking the documents from being released.
With only hours left before a midnight deadline set for the Treasury Department by the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives tax committee, the panel said it had not received the returns. Mnuchin, probably remembering the power that a congressional committee chair wields, stayed for another 15 minutes of questions and then told Waters, "I look forward to being back in May, and we will work on a date".
Democratic Rep. Nydia Velázquez of NY shot back, "And the law says - upon a written request from the chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives, the chairman of the Committee on Finance of the Senate or the Chairman of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the secretary shall furnish".
"I am unable to discuss that with you at this moment", Rettig told CNN after the hearing. The returns of US taxpayers are generally held as confidential by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which is part of the Treasury Department. He said he could handle a small delay, but told Waters that "it will be embarrassing" if he kept the official waiting.
"I have the gavel at this point", Waters said.
The pair continued to spar for another minute or so-an exchange punctuated with Mnuchin imitating Waters using her gavel.
Mnuchin told Waters, "Please dismiss everybody". Or perhaps Mnuchin is just aiming to get fired so he can go back to making more millions and was treating Waters in a manner that would lead to that resolution post-haste.
Financial Services Comm. Chair Rep. Maxine Waters explains her side of a verbal clash she had with Treasury Sec.
The head of the IRS faced questions from politicians for a second day on his response to Neal's request.
After Waters proceeded to continue with the hearing, Mnuchin again chimed in to clarify whether or not Waters was "instructing" him to stay, and therefore, cancel his meeting.
"The requests for [Trump's] private tax information are not consistent with governing law, do not advance any proper legislative goal, and threaten to interfere with the ordinary conduct of audits", said William S. Consovoy, Trump's attorney, in a statement.
During the 2016 campaign, Rettig defended Trump's decision to break with tradition by refusing to release his tax filings.