The devil really is in the details, which is why Donald Trump is so desperate to keep his tax records way down in a hole. Many times, the president has promised to release the records when a marathon audit of his taxes is complete. Trump has provided zero proof he is actually being audited, but considering his long history of shady, shifty and downright illegal business practices, he makes a fat target for IRS bean counters.
So maybe Trump’s tax returns really are under audit. Either way, the audit issue is just another distraction from a shameless con artist who somehow failed his way up to the world’s top job. It’s Trump’s diversion du jour. Even if his returns are under audit, there is nothing — NOTHING — in U.S. tax law that precludes him from releasing the records. He chooses not to release them.
Odd choice for a guy who says he would “love” to release the records and swears he has nothing to hide.
Meanwhile, the IRS tax code gives Congress the power to review the tax records of any American — including the president. IRS code 6103 states that the Treasury Secretary “shall furnish” the records to Congress. Not “may.” Not “can.” Shall. As in “must.” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has already blown two deadlines to hand over the records.
With the law on their side, the Democrat-controlled House Oversight and Reform Committee subpoenaed Trump’s accountants for the records. The Guy Who Has Nothing to Hide filed a lawsuit to block the subpoena.
“The subpoena is ridiculous,” Trump snarled Wednesday. “We have been, I have been, the most transparent president and administration in the history of our country by far.”
Of all the dishonest, hypocritical, preposterous nonsense that ever flowed from this president’s mouth, that statement may be the most ridiculous. Cult 45 ate it up, which brings me to another thing Trump said that is undeniably true.
“The American People don’t care about my tax returns.”
Seeing the truth in that requires consideration of just who Trump and Cult 45 consider the American People. If you believe in the rule of law and that no one — not even a president — is above the law, Trump wasn’t talking about you.