Saturday, 17 November, 2018

Hillary Clinton puts pressure on Trump by releasing tax returns

Roland Mccarthy | 16 August, 2016, 00:16

The 2015 tax return posted on her campaign website appears along with the Clintons' filings since 2007.

While they are not obliged to by law, it is customary for U.S. presidential candidates to make their tax returns public.

Political scientists say Trump may be to blame for their numbers, too. "Trump's biggest problem right now is Trump".

The Clintons have disclosed returns for every year dating back to 1977, in part due to laws that mandate public officials release returns and her previous presidential run. Kaine and Holton had a small amount of earnings from investments, but nearly the entirety of their income came from their salaries: Kaine's income as a United States senator and Holton's from her work as the state of Virginia's secretary of education. Taking into account their state and local taxes, the Clintons had a total effective tax rate of more than 43 percent in 2015. In total they paid $3.24 million in federal income taxes.

The Clintons earned $21 million in 2007, as Hillary Clinton, then a US senator, was running for president. The Kaines paid an effective rate of 20% a year ago on $313,000 in income. It has fueled rampant speculation about just how rich he is, how much he earns, the percentage of income he remits to Uncle Sam and the extent of his contributions to charity.

Trump has said he doesn't plan to release his tax returns before the election because of an ongoing audit of his finances.

The move to release the Clintons' latest recent tax returns puts increased pressure on Trump to do the same. While sure to irk liberal voters for whom Clinton's ties to powerful corporate and banking interests is cause for suspicion, the lists also give Clinton a peg for her argument that she has nothing to hide. He later attacked a Gold Star Muslim American couple who spoke at the convention. He has said of both remarks that they were sarcasm misinterpreted by the media.

Donald Trump declared Friday that there's only one way he could lose the state of Pennsylvania: if he's cheated out of it. In fact, there is nothing preventing him from doing so during an audit.

All major United States presidential candidates in modern history have released their returns.

If Trump's historically bad showing among young voters holds on election day, it could have long-range implications, because it would be the first time since such data became available in 1952 that the Democrats would have won double digit victories among young voters for three straight presidential elections. But the reluctance or hesitance to do so has been harmful. Like Clinton, Obama made it a campaign issue.

The Clinton campaign gleefully pointed all of this out and also released a video that included Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and former presidential nominee Mitt Romney calling for his returns to be released in press clips. Not really. It's not the returns that trip them up. "I would advise him not to release them".

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