You’ve got to hand it to the Democrats and their lap dogs, the main stream media, as they do not give up easily. This month it is President Trump’s tax returns. Only God knows what it will be next month. At least they know how to mount an attack. I would love to see their strategy room adorned with a portrait of George Soros, their patron saint of counter-culture.
I brought the subject of presidential tax returns up a few years ago, but it recently resurfaced. The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Richard E. Neal (D-MA), made a request of the the Internal Revenue Service commissioner for six years of President Trump’s personal and business tax returns, which will inevitably result in a spirited brawl with the White House. Actually, we shouldn’t be surprised; after all, we’re in an election cycle and the Democrats have again embarked on another smoke and mirrors campaign to assassinate the president’s character. They couldn’t take him down with the Mueller investigation, so now they are grasping at straws to find a way to besmirch his character. So, this isn’t about obtaining his tax returns, which they know they are not entitled to, as much as it is a part of their overall strategy to bash the president.
Donald Trump’s failure to disclose his tax returns thus far has once again come under scrutiny by the press. They contend it is their “right” to review all candidate returns to assure they are not cheating or using unscrupulous tax schemes. Mr. Trump contends his tax returns are being audited by the IRS and, based on the advice of his lawyers, he should not release them prematurely. Of course, the Democrats and the press do not accept this and adamantly demands to see his tax returns. Frankly, it is none of their business.
Let’s see if we can clear up a few things regarding this issue.
First, there is absolutely no legal requirement for a candidate to disclose his/her tax returns. This is something the press views as unwritten law, but there is no sand in it. Further, not releasing tax returns is certainly not without precedent. Tax Analysts, a nonprofit organization who monitors presidential tax returns, lists many exceptions:
* “For tax year 2001, both President Bush and Vice President Cheney released partial returns. For tax year 2000, Bush released only his Form 1040; Cheney provided a summary of his taxes, but released no forms.”
* Ronald Reagan did not report his returns for the 1980 election.
* Jimmy Carter also didn’t report his for the 1976 campaign.
* “Gerald Ford did not release his returns, but he did release summary data about his federal taxes for the years between 1966 and 1975.”
* “Franklin Roosevelt did not release tax returns during his presidency, but many returns were later made available by his presidential library.”
And there are no tax returns listed for Dwight Eisenhower and John Kennedy. So, as you can see, there is no mandate to release tax returns. It’s just something the Democrats and the press insists they have a right to. They do not.
As an aside, the only tax report on record for President Trump is for 2005 which was mysteriously produced in 2017 and revealed nothing improper.
Second, rarely does anyone read the tax returns, people just want to know if they have been released. In President Trump’s case though, the attacking liberal media will go through it with a fine tooth comb, spotting any possible indiscretion and blowing it out of proportion. If and when the president releases his tax returns, they will undoubtedly be squeaky clean, leading the press to conclude, “Well, yes, I guess he knows how to make money” (but will never openly admit it to the public).
Third, Mr. Trump provided a summary of his financials in his book, “Crippled America.” Why is the press not interested in analyzing this report?
As long as President Trump holds on to his tax returns, the press and his political opponents will claim this is a liability, that he has something to hide. However, let’s assume the president is correct, that he is being audited by the IRS. Those of you who have suffered through such a review will probably side with the President by saying, “It’s none of your business,” or possibly something a little stronger.
First published: June 15, 2016. Updated 2019.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
For Tim’s columns, see: timbryce.com
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