Sep 27, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Democrats demand Trump release his tax returns after NYT report

Compilation images of House Nancy Pelosi and President Trump

Compilation images of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Trump. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Democrats called on President Trump to disclose his tax returns following a New York Times report alleging he paid $750 in federal income taxes in 2016 and 2017 and nothing in 10 of the past 15 years.

Details: Trump said the report was "total fake news," that he's unable to release the returns as they're "under audit" by the IRS, "which does not treat me well." House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said in a statement the report "provides further evidence of the clear need" for a House lawsuit to access the tax returns and "ensure the presidential audit program is functioning effectively, without improper influence."

What they're saying:

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's campaign team released an ad on Twitter late Sunday with the comment, "Teachers paid $7,239, Firefighters paid $5,283, Nurses paid $10,216, Donald Trump paid $750."

Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez said in a statement, "Trump’s business ties represent a dangerous conflict of interest with his job. And now, with enormous debts soon coming due, he is using the presidency to line his pockets instead of helping the American people.

  • "Donald Trump only cares about two things: his ego and his wallet. He said he’d run our country like one of his businesses. And he was right — over 200,000 people are dead and our country is facing an economic downturn because of his failed leadership," he added, referring to the number of Americans killed by COVID-19."

Ways and Means Chair Richard Neal (D-Mass.), who's spearheading the House lawsuit, said in a statement, "Donald Trump is the boss of the agency he considers an adversary.

"It is essential that the IRS's presidential audit program remain free of interference. Today’s report underscores the importance of the Ways and Means Committee’s ongoing lawsuit to access Mr. Trump’s tax returns and ensure the presidential audit program is functioning effectively, without improper influence."

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) tweeted, "In 2016 & '17, I paid thousands of dollars a year in taxes *as a bartender.* Trump paid $750. He contributed less to funding our communities than waitresses & undocumented immigrants. Donald Trump has never cared for our country more than he cares for himself. A walking scam."

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted, "Donald Trump paid just $750 in income taxes in 2016 and 2017. He knows better than anyone that there’s one set of rules for the wealthy and giant corporations and another for hardworking Americans — and instead of using his power to fix it, he's taken advantage of it at every turn."

Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) tweeted, "Trump's refusal to divest has made him vulnerable to foreign influence and blackmail."

  • The Trump administration did not immediately respond to Axios' request to comment on the Democrats' remarks.

Go deeper: Key findings from NYT report on Trump's taxes

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