Skip to content

Release of Trump’s federal tax returns ushers in a charged new era of presidential oversight



CNN

House Democrats plan to release former President Donald Trump’s federal tax returns Friday morning, ushering in a new era of presidential oversight.

The release comes just days before Republicans, who won a majority in the November midterm elections, take control of the House and launch a series of promised investigations into the administration of President Joe Biden and his son, Hunter Biden.

The release raises the possibility of new revelations about Trump’s financial and business empire, just weeks after he ran for president in 2024. Such revelations could lead to an attempt to retaliate from Republicans, who have claimed that Democrats are opening the door to political weaponization of personal data obtained through congressional investigations.

Trump has refused to release his tax returns as a candidate and as president, ending a precedent that began with former President Jimmy Carter.

The Democrats’ pursuit of Trump’s federal tax returns began after the party took control of the House four years ago — two years after Trump became president. The House Ways and Means Committee, which voted to make documents public last week, claimed that the annual tax audit mandated while Trump was in the White House only happened once in 2019.

Trump’s federal tax returns will be entered into Congressional records during regular pro forma sessions, according to sources familiar with the plan. It follows a supplemental Joint Taxation Commission report released last week by the Ways and Means Committee, detailing six years of the former president’s federal tax returns.

Rep. Kevin Brady, the top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, told reporters that releasing Trump’s tax returns “will have implications far beyond the former president and affect the average American.” “It will be a dangerous new political weapon that will upend decades of privacy protections.” It has existed since the Watergate reforms. ”

“We are united in our concern that Democrats today may take unprecedented action that jeopardizes the right of all Americans to be protected from political targeting by Congress,” Brady said.

Trump has already urged Republicans to retaliate against House Democrats by obtaining Biden’s financial records. In a campaign video released last week, he described the House Ways and Means Committee’s move as an “outrageous abuse of power” and a “crazy political witch hunt” that began when he launched his first presidential campaign in 2015. ” he called.

A few weeks ago, he said he allowed House Democrats to get his tax returns, with conservatives holding a 6-to-3 majority, three of whom tore the Trump-appointed Supreme Court. rice field.

He also suggested that the personal financial data of Biden, his family, and other Democrats should be made public.

“We also need to get to the point of how Biden was able to buy mansion after mansion on a U.S. Senator’s salary — all these different locations,” Trump said. “When I become president, I will expose the cartels in Washington and make America great again.”

Biden voluntarily released tax returns dating back to 1998.

The dispute over Trump’s tax returns dates back to the start of the 2015 presidential campaign.

For decades, major presidential candidates have made their tax returns public. This is a move that began as an effort to demonstrate transparency, giving the public a glimpse into their personal wealth and income sources.

During the 2016 election, Trump claimed he was waiting for the IRS audit to complete and release his tax returns. These releases were never made during an election, and shortly after Trump took office, his former campaign manager and White House top adviser, Kellyanne Conway, said she would never do so.

“The White House response is he is not going to release his tax returns. said on ABC’s “This Week.”

Democrats began pursuing Trump’s taxes two years after he beat Republicans in the 2018 midterm elections. The House Ways and Means Committee cited an investigation into how the IRS mandates a sitting president’s tax audit as a reason to seek Trump’s return from the federal government.

Trump’s attorneys have asked the Supreme Court to block the committee from obtaining the documents as a last resort to prevent the filings from being released, writing in late October: president. But the court has allowed a way for a House panel to obtain those returns the following month.

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal told reporters last week that records show the IRS’s presidential oversight program didn’t work as intended.

“There were no investigations conducted in relation to the mandatory audit program,” said Neil.

The release of Trump’s tax returns is one of the many ways the former president has more scrutiny of his personal and business dealings than when he was first elected.

The Justice Department is investigating Trump’s handling of classified documents at Mar-A-Lago and his role in the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol. The New York Attorney General’s office investigated his family’s business. An investigation in Georgia examines his efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

Republicans have vowed to suspend a congressional probe into Trump’s federal tax returns and end the task force’s probe on Jan. 6. But with Biden in the White House, the Justice Department investigation continues. And the local investigations facing Trump will continue.

Mr Trump has not faced criminal charges. But as potential rivals, including Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Trump’s Vice President Mike Pence, the constant revelations produced by these investigations could hurt Trump’s prospects for 2024.

Trump paid $1.1 million in federal income taxes in 2018 and 2019, according to a Joint Taxation Commission report. This is in contrast to where in 2017 he was $750 and in 2020 he was $0.

Trump’s taxes have increased significantly as his income surged in 2018 and 2019. Trump reported his $22 million capital gains in 2018 and his $9 million profit from the sale of his assets in 2019, after years of huge losses, his income has turned black.

In 2015 and 2016, Trump reported losing more than $32 million each year. Trump said he lost nearly $13 million in 2017. However, he has reported taxable income of his $24 million in 2018 and over $4 million in 2019, and pays a significant amount of taxes.

But as the pandemic hit in 2020, Trump again reported a huge loss of nearly $5 million.

The New York Times has obtained decades of Trump’s personal tax information for 2020, but a federal tax return released Friday shed light on more years of Trump’s finances. It could paint a picture of how the former president has used business entities and personal wealth over the years. Before and after becoming president.

Democrats have long argued that Trump’s taxes could provide the information they need about whether the president has ties that could influence his decisions as president.

But Neil didn’t just ask for Trump’s raw federal tax returns. This information could indicate what kind of scrutiny the IRS has put on Trump in the past and whether that scrutiny changed when he became president.

If the earnings are made public, it could reveal just how wealthy Trump really is, how much he gives to charity and how much taxes he pays. A 2020 New York Times report revealed that Trump could carry forward business losses over years to legally avoid paying taxes for many of those years, but Waze & Means also have access to several years of Trump’s taxes.