The reports posted by the New York Times on President Trump’s tax returns highlight abusive and disgraceful tax that should make anyone ashamed.
To his predecessors, serving as Chief Executive was the honor of a lifetime. For Trump, however, the presidency is nothing more than another target to be looted to line his pockets with taxpayer funds and dodge taxes. The American people deserve better.
According to the New York Times, Trump paid only $750 in income tax in each of 2016 and 2017. For context, constituents in my district with salaries between $10,000 and $25,000 pay approximately that amount in income tax.
The New York Times found that he paid no income tax in 10 of the previous 15 years and received a colossal $72.9 million refund from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the legitimacy of which remains in dispute.
In 2017, Trump paid 400 times more in tax to the Philippines and India than he did to the U.S. government.
Our president likes to tell his supporters “America First,” but the rule he lives by is “Trump First, America Last.”
The New York Times report also reveals just how much he stands to personally gain by being re-elected. He’d remain in a position that allows him to continue to shape national tax policy for personal benefit, retain control over the IRS and its purported decade-long audit of your tax returns, and dodge or negotiate down at least $421 million in debt for which he is personally responsible.
Trump’s business failures make him vulnerable to blackmail and extortion. For all we know, he’s already shaped our national or foreign policy because of pressures related to your colossal debts.
In a press conference on September 27 and in tweets on September 28, President Trump claimed that the New York Times report is “fake news.” This notion has been parroted by his cronies in Congress.
So I have a message for Trump:
You alone have the power to disprove it. What do you say? I urge you to release your tax returns as every one of your predecessors has done for the past 50 years and set the record straight. As your own IRS Commissioner has admitted, nothing precludes you from doing so right now.
What are you afraid of?