On Thursday, Hillary for America released information and a new television ad calling the lack of tax returns from Donald Trump into question. While Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine have made their tax returns public, Trump has yet to do so. View the ad and read the HFA’s release below.
Donald Trump’s Tax Returns: What’s He Hiding?
For 40 years, major party nominees have publicly released their tax returns – a simple and basic disclosure, made to the American people as they determine which candidate is best fit for the presidency. In accordance with this decades-old tradition, Hillary Clinton has made nearly 40 years of tax returns available to the public over the course of her career, dating back to 1977. You can find the past 9 years of her returns here.
Unfortunately, Donald Trump refuses to release his tax returns, despite his promise in 2014 that he “absolutely” would release them if he ran for president. Watch Trump promise to release his returns here.
TRUMP: “If I decide to run for office, I’ll produce my tax returns, absolutely, and I would love to do that.”
Of course, Trump changed his mind when he actually became a candidate for president.
TRUMP: “I want to release my tax returns but I can’t release it while I’m under an audit.”
TRUMP: “There’s nothing to learn from them.”
TRUMP: “It’s none of your business.”
Contradicting his own logic, Trump has released his tax returns while under audit in the past – when the disclosure of his tax returns would benefit his business interests – such as his application for a license to open a casino.
CNN: “Donald Trump insists he won’t release his tax returns during his 2016 presidential run because those returns are the subject of ongoing Internal Revenue Service audits. When he’s had casinos on the line, it’s been a different story.”
Further, Trump has the ability to slow down the audit of his tax returns depending on his rate of response to the IRS – meaning he may be able to make his poor excuse, that his audit prevents his tax return disclosure, last as long as he wants.
WSJ: “Donald Trump says he will release his tax returns when an IRS audit concludes… the Republican presidential nominee omits one major point: He and his attorneys have substantial knowledge about when the audit will end and some ability to slow the process.”
Considering Trump has released his taxes under audit before, and his actions determine the speed at which the IRS can complete the audit, why won’t Trump release his tax returns and what is he hiding? Here’s a few theories:
- Trump may not be worth the $10 billion that he claims
- Trump may pay little to no income tax
- Trump is deeply in debt and owes a hundred million to a foreign bank
- Trump wrongly under values his properties to local tax men
- Trump is making a “flood of cash” from running for president
- Trump is taking tax breaks he shouldn’t
- Trump is hiding his lack of charitable donations
Here’s 5 FACTS we know about Trump’s tax returns:
- In multiple years in which we know Trump’s tax rate, he paid a rate of 0%
- Trump promised millions in charity, but reportedly gave less than $10,000 over a period of 7 years
- Trump has accepted a grant intended for small businesses affected by 9/11
- Trump has repeated accepted a tax break intended for middle-class people
- Trump might not even be undergoing an audit in the first place – and he refuses to present a letter from the IRS, sent to every individual who is audited, to prove it
Prominent Republicans question what Trump is hiding in his tax returns:
George Will: “Perhaps one more reason why we’re not seeing his tax returns is because he is deeply involved in dealing with Russian oligarchs.”
Mitt Romney: “Either he’s not anywhere near as wealthy as he says he is” or “There’s a bombshell in Donald Trump’s taxes.”
Mark Sanford: “I Support You, Donald Trump. Now Release Your Tax Returns.”
Is there ANY way to make Trump release his tax returns? Yesterday, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Member Chris Murphy are calling for the Senate to vote on their bill, the Presidential Tax Transparency Act, to require presidential nominees to release their tax returns after their conventions.
In the meantime, media, pundits, and Americans across the country continue to challenge Trump to release his tax returns.
New York Times: Letters to the Editor: “Why Won’t Trump Release His Taxes?”
Washington Post Editorial: “Even Mike Pence appears to disagree with Trump on releasing tax returns”
Huffington Post: “Even Donald Trump’s Supporters Are Telling Him To Release His Tax Returns”