Trump Getting A Free Pass On His Taxes!

By btails     07/10/2020
Does he pay any taxes or only the little people pay taxes and he is a fraud! Is this the same person that says he is for the hard workers that pay their taxes.
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Trump Is Getting A Free Pass On His Tax Returns. These Numbers Prove It.

BY JUDD LEGUM JUL 29, 2016 2:06 PM

CREDIT: AP PHOTO/GERALD HERBERT

 

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Unlike every other major party nominee since 1976, Donald Trump has not released his tax returns.

He claims that he is not releasing his returns because they are under audit. This excuse is something on a non-sequitur. There is nothing preventing Trump from releasing returns that are under audit. The fact that some returns are under audit, as Paul Krugman noted, actually makes it easier to go public. The primary risk in publicizing your tax returns is triggering an audit.

Further, by his own admission, there are many years of tax returns — everything from 2008 and earlier — that are no longer under audit. Trump won’t release those either.

 


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Donald J. Trump ?@realDonaldTrump

Signing a recent tax return- isn't this ridiculous?

8:35 AM - 25 Feb 2016

 

 

There are 15 years of Hillary Clinton’s tax returns available online.

Nevertheless, Trump has no plans to release his tax returns. His campaign confirmed Wednesday that he “will not be releasing” the returns before the election.

Asked about the issue Thursday night on Fox News, Trump said he has “very, very little pressure” to release the returns.

On that score, he is absolutely right.

ThinkProgress conducted an analysis of coverage of Trump’s tax returns in major newspapers during 2016 and compared them to the coverage of Mitt Romney’s tax returns in 2012.

Romney, like Trump, initially refused to release any of his tax returns. But in January 2012, under pressure from the media Romney released his 2010 tax return and a summary of his 2011 return. It was less than any other major party candidate in decades, but it was something.

Nevertheless, in the first seven months of his election year, Romney generated more than twice the coverage of his tax returns — almost all of it critical — than Trump has generated this year. The contrast is similarly stark at some of the nation’s top national and regional papers:

trumpvsromney4

CREDIT: DYLAN PETROHILOS

Among those critical of Romney’s failure to disclose his returns was Donald Trump himself.

In a January 2012 appearance on Fox News, Trump said that Romney was being “hurt really very badly” by refusing to release his tax returns. He implored Romney to “release them now.”

Trump’s plans for his own returns have varied dramatically. In May, Trump described the release of his tax returns as imminent, saying their release was coming “as fast as the auditors finish.” He switched course days later, telling George Stephanopoulos that his tax rate was “none of your business” and that he fights “very hard to pay as little tax as possible.”

According to information submitted to New Jersey’s gambling commission, Trump paid no taxes at all for at least two years in the 1990s. Similar filings revealed he also paid nothing to the federal government for at least two years in the late 1970s.

Trump’s reluctance to release his returns may go beyond the embarrassment of a low (or 0%) tax rate. His candidacy also presents a dizzying array of conflicts of interest that tax returns could expose in more detail.

His tax returns could also undermine Trump’s claim that he is incredibly rich. Trump claims he is worth $10 billion but that number has been called into question. It is based on multi-billion dollar valuations for nebulous assets like the “Trump” brand. Trump’s personal financial disclosure that he filled with the FEC only required him to reveal assets in broad ranges but showed a much smaller amount of liquid assets. His tax returns could reveal an even bleaker picture.

Trump clearly has a lot to gain from not releasing his tax returns. His explicit calculation is, based on the amount of media scrutiny he’s receiving, why bother?

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By Rachel Brody | Associate Editor

July 29, 2016, at 4:45 p.m.

 

In his speech Wednesday at the Democratic National Convention, vice presidential candidate and everyone's favorite dad Tim Kaine repeatedly dinged Republican nominee Donald Trump for his reliance on the phrase "believe me," when, in fact, he argued, absolutely no one should believe him. "It's gonna be great – believe me!" Kaine said to the convention crowd, imitating Trump to laughs and cheers. "We're gonna build a wall and make Mexico pay for it – believe me! There's nothing suspicious in my tax returns – believe me!"

That last one evoked the loudest whoops and applause by far. Kaine stayed with it: "By the way, does anyone here believe that Donald Trump's been paying his fair share of taxes? Do you believe he ought to release those tax returns like every other presidential candidate in modern history? Of course he should. Donald, what are you hiding?"

It's a fair question. Since the 1970s, presidential candidates have routinely released their tax returns. "This is something that was partly a reaction to Watergate and Richard Nixon, and the growing sense that we want transparency, that we want to know if our presidents are playing by the same rules as other Americans," says Matt Dallek, assistant professor of Political Management in the Graduate School of Political Management at George Washington University. While it's not required by law, it is an expected show of transparency, much like candidates releasing their health records. (For what it's worth, Trump's doctor said the candidate would be "the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency.") "This has become standard operating procedure," says Dallek.


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But Trump isn't releasing his tax returns, at least not now and likely not before the election. His campaign manager Paul Manafort said as much Wednesday, telling CBS News, "Mr. Trump has said that his taxes are under audit and he will not be releasing them." The IRS, however – the federal agency that is conducting Trump's audit – has already said the audit is no roadblock: While the agency can't discuss Trump's tax returns, the candidate himself is free to go for it. "Nothing prevents individuals from sharing their own tax information," the IRS told the Huffington Post. There's even political precedent for it: Richard Nixon released his tax returns while under audit in 1973, though he wasn't running for office at the time.

What's more, his account of the audit itself only raises more questions. Trump claims to have been audited every year for the past 12 years, which according to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, would be "rare." If no issues occurred with the last audit, said Koskinen, “it’s a number of years – two or three at least – before you hear from us again.” And some people like Stuart Stevens, who was a key strategist on Mitt Romney's 2012 campaign, question whether the audit is happening at all:

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stuart stevens @stuartpstevens

If Trump were being audited, stands to reason he'd release audit notice. He hasn't. https://twitter.com/jrubinblogger/status/728061498443051008 …

8:21 PM - 4 May 2016

In May, Trump said he would make his returns public once the audit is over, but his defensive tone suggests otherwise (as does his history of making and then promptly walking back many statements throughout his campaign). When asked if the American public had a right to see his tax returns, he said, "I don't think they do," telling ABC's George Stephanopoulos his tax rate was "none of your business." Harumph!

But for someone who loves winning – and winning bigly – it seems not just silly but complete self-sabotage to pass up such an easy victory. And Trump should know: He repeatedly raised questions about President Barack Obama's birthplace; when the president released his birth certificate in April 2011, Trump was confirmed as a crank and famously seethed under Obama's ridicule over it at the White House Correspondents Dinner. If there is nothing to hide, Trump wins. In fact, he wins-wins-wins.

For one, he could cut off a strong line of attack by Democrats. Hillary Clinton has alreadyreleased her tax returns, going back to 1977. She and her camp now hold the advantage and can continue haranguing Trump for his lack of transparency, painting him as a crook and a liar, while Trump has no real counterattack. Not releasing the returns, says Dallek, "makes it less easy for [Trump] to attack Hillary Clinton for taking money from Goldman Sachs," a charge he's used to depict Clinton as crooked and beholden to Wall Street. If he releases his returns, Trump could better position himself to go on offense.


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Second, Trump could put to rest the many swirling rumors to which he seems magnetized. Trump has said "he has nothing to do with Russia," but some, including conservative commentator George Will, suggest his returns could reveal a reliance on Russian money for his business empire, not to mention his own campaign. (Trump's actions aren't exactly improving the optics.) What's more, he could show the doubters he's not a tax fraudpays what he should and donates to charity dutifully. And he could put to rest speculation that his bank account isn't as yuuge as he claims. If his returns prove him right, releasing them would certainly shut up the nonbelievers.

Third, releasing his tax returns could up his presidential cred. Democrats have cast Trump as an ill-prepared joke of a candidate, someone who couldn't handle the nuclear codes let alone the entire job. Keeping in step with historical precedent – and showing some follow-through – could strengthen his image as a viable head of state, a leader able to follow in the footsteps of our presidents past.

So why hold back? Why not throw everyone's supposed lies in their faces and get a likely boost in the polls, too? Because Trump, despite his insistence to the contrary, has likely made the calculation that he wouldn't win if the American public was to see his tax returns. His decision, then, appears to be based less on principle and reason, as he advertises, than fear of losing. And Trump is no loser. Believe me.