Political News

Six years of Trump tax documents released by Democratic Ways and Means Committee

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Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

(WASHINGTON) — The Democratic-controlled House Ways and Means Committee on Friday publicly released documents related to former President Donald Trump’s tax returns covering the six years from 2015-2020.

The move comes after committee members voted 24-16 last week to release the documents after sensitive information — like bank account numbers and Social Security numbers — had been redacted.

Trump has long fought to keep his tax records private.

Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., told reporters last Tuesday that the committee found there was no ongoing audit of Trump’s tax returns during his presidency until the committee requested them, despite an IRS requirement that tax returns filed by a sitting president or vice president are subject to audit.

Neal said the audit only began in 2019 after he requested the returns and said the audits of the requested returns were never completed.

“The tax forms were really never audited and only my sending a letter at one point prompted a rearview mirror response,” Neal said.

The committee had requested six years’ worth of Trump’s returns from the Treasury Department as part of what it said was an investigation into IRS audit practices of presidents and vice presidents.

Trump has accused the committee of seeking his taxes under false pretenses, saying the probe is just a politically motivated fishing expedition. But the committee said the documents were critical for drafting “legislation on equitable tax administration, including legislation on the President’s tax compliance.”

According to a summary released last week by the committee, Trump and his wife, Melania, together reported $31.7 million in losses and reported $641,931 in net taxes during the first year of Trump’s presidential campaign, in 2015.

During the 2016 presidential election year, the two again reported losing $32.4 million in adjusted gross income and paid just $750 in taxes, according to the committee. During Trump’s first year in office, the couple reported losing $12.9 million and again paid $750 in taxes.

In 2018, their adjusted gross income went up, with them bringing in $24.3 million, and they reported paying $999,456 in taxes. In 2019, the two reported making $4.4 million and paid $133,445 in taxes.

In 2020, they reported losing $4.8 million and Trump paid $0 in taxes.

The top Republican on the committee, Rep. Kevin Brady of Texas, has said Democrats made a major mistake in a “rush to target” Trump by releasing his tax returns.

“Ways and Means Democrats are unleashing a dangerous new political weapon that reaches far beyond President Trump, and jeopardizes the privacy of every American,” Brady said in a statement.

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