With the Russia story continuing to grow, it’s clear now more than ever that we need Trump’s tax returns.
As you know, Donald Trump hasn’t paid taxes for 18 years. Trump was the only major party presidential candidate in recent history not to make his tax returns public. And soon, Trump will be the only president in recent history not to release his tax returns come April 15.
Trump’s taxes would go a long ways towards explaining the depths of his financial ties to Russia — remember, Trump’s son said a few years back that a lot of their business was with Russia, yet now Trump himself denies it — and it would give us a window into all of the Trump empire’s shady business deals in other countries.
SENATE COULD SUBPOENA TRUMP’S TAXES
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein of California said yesterday that Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee may ultimately subpoena Trump’s tax returns. Feinstein says Dems aren’t there yet, but that Dems do have the power to issue their own subpoenas, without the Republicans’ assent.
Interestingly, GOP Sen. Susan Collins of Maine is also open to looking into subpoenaing Trump’s taxes. Now, the White House still may be able to say no. So who knows what happens next. But let Trump argue that he has a right — a need — to hide his taxes when every other candidate, and president, has released them in the past. At the very least, such a move by the Intelligence Committee would help to yet again put a focus on Trump’s taxes.
Trump’s factually-challenged adviser Kellyanne Conway keeps saying that “people don’t care” about Trump’s taxes. In fact, a poll in January of this year showed 74% of Americans wanted to see Trump’s taxes, including 49% of his own supporters. So people do care, a lot.
IT ALL COMES BACK TO RUSSIA
And all of this, again, raises the same question that comes up during the Russia probe — what is Trump hiding? Why would Trump and his adviser lie about all the meetings they had with the Russians throughout the presidential campaign? Why would they sneak the Russian ambassador in the back door of Trump Tower in December in order to allegedly meet Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn? Why did Trump himself lie about never having spoken with any Russians during the campaign — we now know that Trump met Russian ambassador Kislyak last April.
So much obfuscation, so many lies. Among the ongoing mysteries, CNN revealed last night that federal investigators continue to look into a weird computer server connection between Trump’s business and a Russian bank. The two computer servers kept communicating in 2016, and no one has fully explained why. CNN has a great write up on this, and why it’s so odd.
IN OTHER NEWS
– Gen. Flynn was working as a paid lobbyist for the government of Turkey while he was working on the Trump transition. This, in spite of Trump’s promise to drain the swamp and ban his team from lobbying for foreign governments. White House press secretary Sean Spicer today suggested it would have been wrong for the Trump administration not to permit Flynn to work on the transition. The entire thing is just bizarre, and another example of classic Trump administration corruption.
– The head of Trump’s EPA doesn’t believe carbon dioxide is a big contributor to climate change. It is.
– According to a new article in the New Yorker: “The President helped build a hotel in Azerbaijan that appears to be a corrupt operation engineered by oligarchs tied to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.” Ivanka had a hand in the deal as well.
– Trump’s Secretary of State Rex Tillerson banned the US press corps from traveling with him on his trip to Asia. This is an unprecedented move, which CNN’s Jake Tapper, among others, vocally criticized.
– Employment numbers were released today, and were again very good. Trump actually said today via Spicer that THESE job numbers are real, even though Trump has said until now that all the job numbers are fake. To understand how fully Trump lied about the unemployment rate, the current rate that Trump now trusts is 4.7%. Yet a few months ago Trump said the unemployment was 42%. We’re to believe that the number dropped from 42% to 4.7% in just six weeks? Trump is a liar. Literally nothing the man says you can trust. And that’s really pathetic. It’s also dangerous.
– And lest I forget, the Republican repeal of Obamacare is blowing up in their faces. The House GOP plan was rushed out, without the Congressional Budget Office even getting a chance to figure out how much the legislation will cost and how many people it will cause to lose health insurance. Senate Republicans, and even some House Republicans, are objecting. So the entire thing is in limbo right now. Republicans very much want to get the repeal passed BEFORE the upcoming Easter break, lest they go home and get yelled at again by their constituents.
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