Trump’s tax returns released, launching new review of his finances
Republicans have denounced the move as a political stunt that will open a Pandora’s box.
Six years of Trump filings will now be available to tax experts and non-experts alike, a development that former Trump fixer Michael Cohen said the former president feared would result in the government collecting taxes and additional penalties.
A preliminary analysis of Trump’s taxes by the Congressional tax brain trust, the Joint Committee on Taxation, found the former president paid little or no taxes for several years claiming business losses. gigantic. Trump paid $750 in 2016 and 2017 and paid nothing in 2020, JCT said.
Among the items described by JCT are several red flags that could alter the amount of taxes Trump will end up owing once the IRS completes ongoing audits.
Despite the release of the statements, important questions may still remain unanswered, said Steve Rosenthal of the nonpartisan Fiscal Policy Center.
The huge losses Trump claimed to cut his taxes appear to be from previous tax years and still haven’t been erased by the IRS, making it difficult to assess their legitimacy, Rosenthal said.
Trump carried back $105 million in losses to 2015 and reported $73 million in losses to 2016, but these likely stem from the staggering $700 million loss the New York Times reported Trump claimed during of his return in 2009, among other potential losses, Rosenthal said.
The “elephant in the room” is past returns that ultimately did not make it to the ways and means review.
« It’s essential, but the committee didn’t ask for that, » Rosenthal said.
According to a Ways and Means report released last week, the IRS has been vastly overwhelmed in its efforts to audit Trump, whose statements went unaudited during his first two years in office despite a policy of IRS to review the taxes of sitting presidents.
A single IRS agent was tasked with reviewing Trump’s voluminous returns and was pitted against partners at a global law firm and a former chief IRS attorney. Representatives for Trump protested when it was suggested the IRS bring in two more auditors to help handle the extensive paperwork.
Republicans, who will take control of the House on January 3, say Trump’s decision to free up taxes will open a new front in the political war in which the tax information of no one – from those of Supreme Court justices to chiefs company and union organizations – will be protected from disclosure.