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Old 04-14-2019, 02:45 PM
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Trump & public tax returns


The issue of Trump and his tax returns is a bit of a puzzle for us on this island on side of the Atlantic. Our politicians don't publish theirs. I understand that it has been a voluntary convention, but he doesn't have to.

So what if Trump said, "I'll instruct the IRS to publish EVERYONE's tax returns as of next year. Mine, yours, and Uncle Tom Cobbley's."? Dopers don't have anything to hide, do they? The basis of such a system is in place in Norway, so it's possible.
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Old 04-14-2019, 02:52 PM
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Is there a question here?

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Old 04-14-2019, 03:20 PM
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The issue of Trump and his tax returns is a bit of a puzzle for us on . . .
Oh please. Really? Could the disingenuousness be any more clumsy?

The concept of conflict of interest isn't that hard to grasp. I have no problem showing my returns, but this is about people who hold (or run for office) and also operate businesses which can benefit from how they execute their duties--and you well know it.
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Old 04-14-2019, 03:28 PM
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He isn't required to, that's true. Run of the mill citizens do not, either. Poiticians- as a demonstration of trasparency- have been doing so. The only people in America who have actually requested to see Trtump's returns are in Congress, and they actually found a valid law that allows them to see the returns. That's all there is to this.
Unless you're Trump or Trump's enabler, in which case now is a great time to find different ways to break the law.

Last edited by bobot; 04-14-2019 at 03:29 PM.
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Old 04-14-2019, 03:31 PM
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It would be illegal for Trump to have everyone's tax returns made public. That is different than having tax returns given to the committees in the Congress and the Senate whose business it is to develop tax policy. It would be illegal for that committee to release them (or his) after they were turned over as well.

It is also illegal for the IRS to not turn them over. Requests under this law for specific tax returns have been made for years. And scrutinizing the President was one of the primary reasons for setting this law up in the first place.
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Old 04-14-2019, 03:34 PM
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The only people in America who have actually requested to see Trtump's returns are in Congress, and they actually found a valid law that allows them to see the returns.
Not totally true; plenty of us not in Congress would like his tax returns to be public, although it would be best had they been available prior to the election, so that we could have made a more informed decision.
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Old 04-14-2019, 03:42 PM
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The issue of Trump and his tax returns is a bit of a puzzle for us on this island on side of the Atlantic. Our politicians don't publish theirs. I understand that it has been a voluntary convention, but he doesn't have to.

So what if Trump said, "I'll instruct the IRS to publish EVERYONE's tax returns as of next year. Mine, yours, and Uncle Tom Cobbley's."? Dopers don't have anything to hide, do they? The basis of such a system is in place in Norway, so it's possible.
The IRS can not do so, legally. They can't publish anyone's personal tax info. They can provide them only under subpoena or request from the House.

We have a custom of Politicians doing so. However, the House is legally allowed to request any persons tax returns. So legally trump doesn't have to, but legally Congress can get them.
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Old 04-14-2019, 03:49 PM
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The issue of Trump and his tax returns is a bit of a puzzle for us on this island on side of the Atlantic.
I'm sure it's not really a "puzzle" to anyone who has given it a moment's thought.

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So what if Trump said, "I'll instruct the IRS to publish EVERYONE's tax returns as of next year. Mine, yours, and Uncle Tom Cobbley's."? Dopers don't have anything to hide, do they? The basis of such a system is in place in Norway, so it's possible.
What exactly would be the point to that? Most dopers aren't in a position to sign new trade deals or propose laws or changes in taxes that would vastly increase their personal wealth. Trump's activities could be entirely legal, but still represent a conflict of interest - something that wouldn't apply to ordinary citizen.

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Unless you're Trump or Trump's enabler, in which case now is a great time to find different ways to break the law.
For someone who claims not to be a Trump supporter, the OP sure spends a lot of time worrying about how Trump may be being treated unfairly.
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Old 04-14-2019, 04:58 PM
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I'm sure it's not really a "puzzle" to anyone who has given it a moment's thought.
Really? UK politicians don't publish their taxes. Nor do politicians of many other countries. What makes the US so special? Are you sure your bias isn't showing? Why aren't you demanding that all members of both houses publish their taxes? After all, don't they run the various committees? Don't they vote to approve or reject your president's bills?
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Old 04-14-2019, 04:59 PM
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Oh please. Really? Could the disingenuousness be any more clumsy?
Straight in with the ad hominem, I see.
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Old 04-14-2019, 05:27 PM
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Really? UK politicians don't publish their taxes. Nor do politicians of many other countries. What makes the US so special? Are you sure your bias isn't showing? Why aren't you demanding that all members of both houses publish their taxes? After all, don't they run the various committees? Don't they vote to approve or reject your president's bills?
You happen to be a little out of date on that:


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...-a6978131.html

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...-a6978861.html

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/201...-david-camero/

No one is saying Trump has to publish- he obviously got elected without doing so. But it is a American custom, that has now spread to the UK.

However Congress does have the right to subpoena Trumps return.
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Old 04-14-2019, 05:31 PM
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Really? UK politicians don't publish their taxes. Nor do politicians of many other countries. What makes the US so special? Are you sure your bias isn't showing? Why aren't you demanding that all members of both houses publish their taxes? After all, don't they run the various committees? Don't they vote to approve or reject your president's bills?
While I'm not "demanding" anything, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea if leading politicians did publish their taxes, because of exactly this issue. Perhaps the US can lead the way for the UK and other countries. In any case, there have been many good reasons for Trump's taxes in particular to be of interest, from financial fraud committed by the Trump Foundation to financial interests in Russia and other countries.

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Straight in with the ad hominem, I see.
This is IMHO. Of course your longstanding history of coming to the defense of Trump while denying you actually support him is going to color people's perception of why you are asking the question, particularly when the answer is as glaringly obvious as it is in this case.
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Old 04-14-2019, 05:35 PM
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Really? UK politicians don't publish their taxes. Nor do politicians of many other countries. What makes the US so special?
As has been already noted, it *not* legally required, but it's become a norm / expectation among, at least, major-party presidential candidates here for at least three or four decades. I'm too lazy to look up cites, but I suspect it happened on the heels of Watergate, and Nixon's abuses of power, and the distrust in government which resulted from this.

And, as has been noted, the reason that candidates have been open about their tax returns is a desire to show at least a modicum of transparency to voters, and to demonstrate that they don't have financial conflicts of interest. It appears very likely that Trump has had absolutely no desire to do this.

Other information about Trump's businesses that has come out over the years indicate that his personal finances are intimately entwined with those of his numerous businesses. There are widespread beliefs that he hasn't wanted to release his taxes because either (a) they may indicate that he is not, in fact, as wealthy as he claims to be, and / or (b) because he's engaged in questionable financial activities, and he doesn't want to open the floodgates of people poking around further in his finances.

If memory serves, Trump was the only major-party nominee since then who did *not* release his taxes. It's just one of a number of norms and traditions in American politics which Trump has decided to ignore.

During the campaign, he regularly dodged the issue, stating, "I'm always under audit, so I can't release my taxes" (now, there are no IRS regulations stating this, though yeah, maybe his lawyers, or the little voice in his head, were telling him not to release them). And, he kicked that can down the road long enough that the election happened, at which point his spokesmen could say, "the American public doesn't care about his taxes, it's a settled issue, stop asking."

Are Trump's finances actually on the up and up? Sure, it's possible, though I find it hard to believe. His evasiveness about the topic does nothing but fuel more speculation about it all.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 04-14-2019 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 04-14-2019, 06:50 PM
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This is IMHO. Of course your longstanding history of coming to the defense of Trump
Is scant to non-existent. You will find that I have attacked bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like rather than defended Trump. You know, 'fighting ignorance' and all that. Isn't that part of the motto of this place?

But how about you actually address the question in my OP? What if Trump instructs the IRS - through whatever legal mechanism is required - to release everyone's tax records?
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Old 04-14-2019, 07:02 PM
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....
But how about you actually address the question in my OP? What if Trump instructs the IRS - through whatever legal mechanism is required - to release everyone's tax records?
I already answered that. The IRS can not do so, legally. They can't publish anyone's personal tax info. They can provide them only under subpoena or request from the House.


The IRS would refuse, Trump would had a snit fit, and the Courts would say he cant do that. Trump could fire the Commissioner, but not make the IRS perform illegal actions.
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Old 04-14-2019, 07:05 PM
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It would be nice if he tried to make the IRS perform illegal actions, as it would add to the list of high crimes and misdemeanors.
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Old 04-14-2019, 07:38 PM
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Is scant to non-existent. You will find that I have attacked bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like rather than defended Trump. You know, 'fighting ignorance' and all that. Isn't that part of the motto of this place?

But how about you actually address the question in my OP? What if Trump instructs the IRS - through whatever legal mechanism is required - to release everyone's tax records?
There is no legal mechanism that would allow IRS to release everyone's tax records.
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Old 04-14-2019, 08:35 PM
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Really? UK politicians don't publish their taxes. Nor do politicians of many other countries. What makes the US so special? Are you sure your bias isn't showing? Why aren't you demanding that all members of both houses publish their taxes? After all, don't they run the various committees? Don't they vote to approve or reject your president's bills?
Your country has some political traditions that are fucking stupid, like that hereditary peers are still a thing. But I can understand at a basic level that these quirks are just what they are, and I don’t ask questions like why the UK doesn’t make all professions matters of having the right parents. (Want to run a shop? Well you better inherit it! Want to be a doctor? Etc)
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Old 04-14-2019, 09:07 PM
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Your country has some political traditions that are fucking stupid, like that hereditary peers are still a thing. But I can understand at a basic level that these quirks are just what they are, and I don’t ask questions like why the UK doesn’t make all professions matters of having the right parents. (Want to run a shop? Well you better inherit it! Want to be a doctor? Etc)
Actually I have shown that in the UK the Polticos are now starting to reveal their taxes, just like in the US.
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Old 04-14-2019, 09:29 PM
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Are you sure your bias isn't showing?
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Oh please. Really? Could the disingenuousness be any more clumsy?
When you're defending yourself against the accusation of being disingenuous, being disingenuous is hardly the way to go about it. It's obvious the reason you even asked this question is to play "gotcha" by posing a ludicrous hypothetical and then make accusations of bias if people didn't agree with it.

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Is scant to non-existent. You will find that I have attacked bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like rather than defended Trump. You know, 'fighting ignorance' and all that. Isn't that part of the motto of this place?
Odd how those supposed "bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like" you attack are so frequently against Trump rather than against Democrats. You've also wrung your hands in distress because you feel this place is too hostile to Trump. Yes, yes, you're clearly completely even handed and free of bias.

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But how about you actually address the question in my OP? What if Trump instructs the IRS - through whatever legal mechanism is required - to release everyone's tax records?
For what purpose? You haven't explained what the objective of this would be. I and others have pointed out that there is good reason for politicians who have potential conflicts of interest to reveal their tax returns. I've said it would be fine with me if all candidates for political office and office holders had to reveal them. What would be the rationale for a person with no individual influence on public policy to do so? The average person has some expectation of privacy about their lives. Once you become a candidate, you no longer have that expectation of privacy.

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Old 04-14-2019, 09:46 PM
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You happen to be a little out of date on that:


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...-a6978131.html

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/u...-a6978861.html

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/201...-david-camero/

No one is saying Trump has to publish- he obviously got elected without doing so. But it is a American custom, that has now spread to the UK.

However Congress does have the right to subpoena Trumps return.
They do? I admit, I haven't been following along. Is this part of the Russia investigation? And, assuming they do have the right, do they have the right to publish them to the general public?

I'm not sure where I stand on this. Basically, I just don't care that much about their tax returns (or Trump's in this specific case), but it does seem to be important to many in this thread so I guess there is that. I don't see why it's important, personally, so it's just a disconnect with me I guess. It's a pretty recent custom in the US to do this...I seem to recall it's only been a thing since I've been voting.
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Old 04-14-2019, 10:00 PM
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They do? I admit, I haven't been following along. Is this part of the Russia investigation? And, assuming they do have the right, do they have the right to publish them to the general public?
Yes, Congress (specifically the head of the House Ways and Means Committee, the head of the Senate Finance Committee, or the head of the Joint Committee on Taxation) has the right to order the Secretary of the Treasury (who oversees the IRS) to provide the tax returns of any taxpayer. This has been a law since the 1920s, and was put in place specifically because of a political scandal (Teapot Dome) involving the president; before that law was enacted, only the president had the power to compel the release of someone's tax returns. Note that, apparently; the Secretary of the Treasury and the IRS have no wiggle room on this; there's no provision for them to refuse such a request.

It appears that there is no provision that these returns must then remain confidential, though, IIRC, in the letter to the IRS which Richard Neal (head of Ways and Means) sent, he indicated that the returns, when received, would be kept confidential.

https://www.npr.org/2018/10/11/65661...rns-here-s-how

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Old 04-14-2019, 10:10 PM
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Yes, Congress (specifically the head of the House Ways and Means Committee, the head of the Senate Finance Committee, or the head of the Joint Committee on Taxation) has the right to order the Secretary of the Treasury (who oversees the IRS) to provide the tax returns of any taxpayer. This has been a law since the 1920s, and was put in place specifically because of a political scandal (Teapot Dome) involving the president; before that law was enacted, only the president had the power to compel the release of someone's tax returns. Note that, apparently; the Secretary of the Treasury and the IRS have no wiggle room on this; there's no provision for them to refuse such a request.

It appears that there is no provision that these returns must then remain confidential, though, IIRC, in the letter to the IRS which Richard Neal (head of Ways and Means) sent, he indicated that the returns, when received, would be kept confidential.

https://www.npr.org/2018/10/11/65661...rns-here-s-how
Ah, thanks. I didn't actually make that connection. I was thinking this war part of the Russia investigation. I assume that, in the past, it was basically not something that Congress did very often, but that this time they feel there is a need to do so. Appreciate the answer.
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Old 04-14-2019, 10:27 PM
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If the tax returns do come out and become public I have a feeling it will show what he wants most to hide. Not collusion or illegal activity. I mean come on his accountants aren’t stupid enough to put illegal activity on his tax returns. It will show he’s not as rich as he says he is.
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Old 04-14-2019, 10:37 PM
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Ah, thanks. I didn't actually make that connection. I was thinking this war part of the Russia investigation.
I'm not sure that it's entirely unrelated to the Russia probe, though it appears that at least part of the impetus for the request may have been Michael Cohen's testimony to the House Oversight Committee in February. Under questioning from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Cohen testified that Trump undervalued assets in order to reduce tax liabilities.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/28/o...n-hearing.html
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/28/watc...x-returns.html

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Old 04-14-2019, 10:45 PM
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If the tax returns do come out and become public I have a feeling it will show what he wants most to hide. Not collusion or illegal activity. I mean come on his accountants aren’t stupid enough to put illegal activity on his tax returns. It will show he’s not as rich as he says he is.
Perhaps. But income from, say, various Russian entities are not in and of themselves illegal, and I should think the accountants would include them, however disguised they might be, simply to avoid tax evasion charges. They're on the hook as well if they file a false return on Trump's behalf. Such payments would be evidence of influence such entities may have on Trump's decision making/collusion.
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Old 04-14-2019, 10:49 PM
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I assume that, in the past, it was basically not something that Congress did very often, but that this time they feel there is a need to do so.
There is no need to invoke the law when the President voluntarily releases his tax returns to the public. Which every President since Nixon has done, except Trump.
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Old 04-14-2019, 10:52 PM
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Trump's father had illegal stuff in his tax report, showing how he illegally gave his son funds. Nixon had stuff that was well enough hidden that it survived an initial audit by the IRS, but not a subsequent one.

Trump's lawyers do not seem particularly good at hiding illegal activity, why not his accountants? He says he hires the best people, but he clearly doesn't.

I do however think he also likely is not as rich as he claims to be. Otherwise his false confidence would lead him to show it, since he still thinks he's above the law.
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Old 04-14-2019, 11:55 PM
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Yes, Congress (specifically the head of the House Ways and Means Committee, the head of the Senate Finance Committee, or the head of the Joint Committee on Taxation) has the right to order the Secretary of the Treasury (who oversees the IRS) to provide the tax returns of any taxpayer. This has been a law since the 1920s, and was put in place specifically because of a political scandal (Teapot Dome) involving the president; before that law was enacted, only the president had the power to compel the release of someone's tax returns. Note that, apparently; the Secretary of the Treasury and the IRS have no wiggle room on this; there's no provision for them to refuse such a request.

It appears that there is no provision that these returns must then remain confidential, though, IIRC, in the letter to the IRS which Richard Neal (head of Ways and Means) sent, he indicated that the returns, when received, would be kept confidential.

https://www.npr.org/2018/10/11/65661...rns-here-s-how
IMHO, i think that the returns themselves need to be kept confidential, sadly. However the Chair should release a precis /summary of what was on Trumps returns.
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Old 04-15-2019, 02:51 AM
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Odd how those supposed "bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like" you attack are so frequently against Trump rather than against Democrats.
Not odd given the politics of this place.


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You've also wrung your hands in distress because you feel this place is too hostile to Trump. Yes, yes, you're clearly completely even handed and free of bias.
And yet I've referred to him a a turd that will soon pass.

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For what purpose?
What have you got to hide?
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Old 04-15-2019, 02:51 AM
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Straight in with the ad hominem, I see.
Not in the slightest. This is only about you in so much as I know you're too smart and too well informed to be "in a bit of a puzzle" about this. Clearly my comment was entirely directed at a transparent rhetorical ploy, not at a person. Or, as Colibri aptly states,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colibri
It's obvious the reason you even asked this question is to play "gotcha" by posing a ludicrous hypothetical and then make accusations of bias if people didn't agree with it.
This kind of contrivance is not exactly new around here, either.
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Old 04-15-2019, 07:47 AM
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Money plays such an outsized role in U.S. politics that revealing tax returns is one of the very few ways the public has of learning if a candidate's/politician's income is influencing his policy positions. This seems so basic as to make me wonder why this would ever be questioned.
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Old 04-15-2019, 09:33 AM
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You will find that I have attacked bad arguments, unfounded accusations, and the like rather than defended Trump.
It’s hard to argue against people’s perception. Due to your past posts, when I see your username I think ‘that’s the guy who pretends to not like Trump... but really does’. Not knocking it because I don’t really care just saying, to me, that’s how you come across.

If I thought of you as stupid I could write it off. But you’re clearly too smart to ask those questions in earnest.
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Old 04-15-2019, 09:46 AM
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There is no need to invoke the law when the President voluntarily releases his tax returns to the public. Which every President since Nixon has done, except Trump.
Right...since Nixon. But that leaves many decades that this law was in where Congress didn't use it. I think there needs to be some sort of reasonable reason for Congress TOO do this. In the case of Trump, I think that a case could be made if this is part of the Russia investigation or has to potential to demonstrate conflicts of interest that might exist wrt Trump the private CEOs business holdings or dealings and Trump, the US President.

Myself, I think Trump doesn't want his tax returns released because I think it will show he doesn't have nearly the amount of wealth he has claimed he does, and he doesn't want that to be general knowledge. Hell, he might have a LOT less than what he's claimed, and that would be embarrassing for him, so I expect him to fight it tooth and nail. But such a release might also show some conflict of interest stuff that I think Congress does need to know. I support this effort, now having thought it through and seen why it's being done. I also now see why it can be important. So, ignorance fought.
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Old 04-15-2019, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Lucas Jackson View Post
It’s hard to argue against people’s perception. Due to your past posts, when I see your username I think ‘that’s the guy who pretends to not like Trump... but really does’. Not knocking it because I don’t really care just saying, to me, that’s how you come across.
Let me give you some homework: write down what you think I think and try to justify that from what I've actually written, not what biased individuals like Colibri above say about me. I've been through this once with another person.

You might start here and here and here and well, off you go.
  #36  
Old 04-15-2019, 11:11 AM
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Let me give you some homework: write down what you think I think and try to justify that from what I've actually written, not what biased individuals like Colibri above say about me. I've been through this once with another person.

You might start here and here and here and well, off you go.
link right back atcha
  #37  
Old 04-15-2019, 11:32 AM
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Personally this American doesn't feel like anyone should be forced to release their tax returns. Obviously it's mostly political opponents looking for dirt, which is understandable, but everyone should be able to keep their finances private if they want. Just because it's "tradition" doesn't mean it's a good tradition.

Having said that, if there is anything criminal going on with Trump's finances, then by all means the appropriate agencies should prosecute him fully. But I don't think you or I should have any right to view a president's tax returns.

Last edited by control-z; 04-15-2019 at 11:33 AM.
  #38  
Old 04-15-2019, 12:22 PM
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Obviously it's mostly political opponents looking for dirt, which is understandable, but everyone should be able to keep their finances private if they want.
I'm a public employee, and each year I have to do a financial disclosure listing my bank accounts, retirement holdings, etc. Plus, my salary is a matter of public record. I just take it as part of normal life to have such information about me in the public. Sure, my tax returns are not public, but if they were, they would be only marginally more intrusive than what I'm subject to today.

I'm sure other Presidents have looked at this similar set of facts and determined that making tax returns public just isn't that big a deal to them. Clearly, Trump wants to hide something. I'm guessing it is that he got a raise when he took the job as President.
  #39  
Old 04-15-2019, 12:23 PM
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And? People who clock on the View Thread link will get a very different impression from the one you paint.
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Old 04-15-2019, 12:28 PM
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And? People who clock on the View Thread link will get a very different impression from the one you paint.
Nah. They won't.

We know you're the guy who defends Trump, but then once every six weeks posts a thread stating that he's not your cup of tea. I assure you, such fragility does not come across as principled -- merely weak.
  #41  
Old 04-15-2019, 12:50 PM
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And? People who clock on the View Thread link will get a very different impression from the one you paint.
And those that have viewed your posts over the years might suggest that your own self-portrait might be a bit self-serving. Your OP is so skewed as to be worthless, in my opinion.
  #42  
Old 04-15-2019, 01:03 PM
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Not odd given the politics of this place.
No actual answer, I see.

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And yet I've referred to him a a turd that will soon pass.
Yet you think that such attacks are diminishing the Straight Dope brand.

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What have you got to hide?
I see you aren't even going to attempt to answer my question. Not much of a surprise there.
  #43  
Old 04-15-2019, 01:20 PM
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Nah. They won't.

We know you're the guy who defends Trump, but then once every six weeks posts a thread stating that he's not your cup of tea. I assure you, such fragility does not come across as principled -- merely weak.
Reminds me of this exchange:

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Originally Posted by Quartz View Post
Trump is deplorable but the way Dopers treat him is despicable.
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Originally Posted by iiandyiiii View Post
Oh my god. I hadn't heard any of this. Are Dopers sending him dead animals in the mail? Are they following his grandchildren at school and threatening them? Are Dopers slashing his tires?

Despicable treatment? Sounds awful!
He never responded. Care to elaborate on the "despicable" treatment of Trump?
  #44  
Old 04-15-2019, 02:51 PM
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Right...since Nixon. But that leaves many decades that this law was in where Congress didn't use it. I think there needs to be some sort of reasonable reason for Congress TOO do this. In the case of Trump, I think that a case could be made if this is part of the Russia investigation or has to potential to demonstrate conflicts of interest that might exist wrt Trump the private CEOs business holdings or dealings and Trump, the US President.
...
There is a reasonable reason- Trump ordered the AG not to release the Mueller report.
  #45  
Old 04-15-2019, 04:28 PM
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There is a reasonable reason- Trump ordered the AG not to release the Mueller report.
That is certainly (another) red flag, but I think the ones I listed are the basic ones that justify action by Congress, and since the law is there already, I think it's fine for them to use it to get the data. Whether they release that to the public will be their call. My guess is that it will get released at this point, both for the embarrassment factor and, more importantly, as the people just want to know if there is anything going on with all this smoke. Trump certainly is his own worst enemy, assuming there isn't anything more in there than he is less rich than he claimed. If there is, then it would make sense for him to stir things up to obscure whatever is in there, but my WAG is there isn't really anything in there that rises to the level of real conflict of interest and he's doing it just because he's an idiot. I HOPE there is something in there though, I admit...
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  #46  
Old 04-15-2019, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Ravenman View Post
We know you're the guy who defends Trump, but then once every six weeks posts a thread stating that he's not your cup of tea. I assure you, such fragility does not come across as principled -- merely weak.
I actually get the strong impression that he posts these weak anti-Trump threads about trivial subjects just in order to be able to link to them when he's accused of being pro-Trump.
  #47  
Old 04-15-2019, 06:56 PM
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I actually get the strong impression that he posts these weak anti-Trump threads about trivial subjects just in order to be able to link to them when he's accused of being pro-Trump.
Oh, totally. “See guys? I’m just being fair!”

Similar to the pattern of sexism interspersed with an occasional example of a man white knighting to the rescue of a woman. “See guys? This guy did something great for a helpless female, and I support it!”

I’m surprised he hasn’t posted a thread about a pleasant restaurant experience to offset the insult tip he left a waitress because his Hollandaise has “no discernible lemon.”

(I swear, the two phrases this board has seared into my memory are Aldebaran’s “My post is my cite” and Quartz’s “no discernible lemon.”)
  #48  
Old 04-15-2019, 08:11 PM
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Oh, totally. “See guys? I’m just being fair!”

Similar to the pattern of sexism interspersed with an occasional example of a man white knighting to the rescue of a woman. “See guys? This guy did something great for a helpless female, and I support it!”
Yeah, those kind of threads by him came to mind too.
  #49  
Old 04-15-2019, 08:26 PM
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The issue of Trump and his tax returns is a bit of a puzzle for us on this island on side of the Atlantic. Our politicians don't publish theirs.
I fail to see any argument that the UK is to be commended in that respect.

"Hey, our politicians can more easily embezzle and cheat the people! Why y'all not doing it like us??"

Well...because that would be stupid. If your country has been able to claw out a decent set of anti-corruption measures against the people who actually make the laws - something that is traditionally almost impossible to accomplish - I fail to see the argument that you would want to get rid of it. It's like complaining that someone was actually able to quit smoking...if you're complaining out of sour grapes, then I suppose that's fine. But there's no argument that, somehow, smoking is good for you. If someone tried to make the argument that somehow it was bad to quit smoking, I'd generally be curious who was paying their wage and if it was somehow connected to the tobacco industry.

And, in the case of the President of the United States, his office is defined by the Constitution. That same document also makes an explicit rule that the office holder cannot receive any payments or other goods of value from a foreign nation. It makes sense, on that basis, for the person to have their finances on the public record.

Quote:
So what if Trump said, "I'll instruct the IRS to publish EVERYONE's tax returns as of next year. Mine, yours, and Uncle Tom Cobbley's."? Dopers don't have anything to hide, do they? The basis of such a system is in place in Norway, so it's possible.
It's against the law.
  #50  
Old 04-15-2019, 09:35 PM
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It's against the law.
I believe his argument is that since the law says that someone who is arguably the most powerful person in the world, with immense ability to influence finances and trade, has to release his tax returns, then it's only fair that every other single person in the country should also have to release theirs. And if you disagree with this, it's obviously just because you're biased against Trump. Gotcha!

That's a guess, however, since he's made no attempt to actually explain what his point was.
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