The Democratic-led House Ways and Means Committee said on Tuesday that it would release former President Donald Trump’s tax returns within days and asserted that the IRS failed to properly audit the former president’s taxes while he was in office.
The committee also released a report on Tuesday that detailed six years’ worth of the former president’s tax returns, including his claims of massive annual losses that significantly reduced his tax burden.
Chairman Richard Neal and fellow Democrats said Tuesday that the records they obtained showed the presidential audit program failed to work as intended. The Democrat Congressman from Massachusetts charged that the required audit of Trump’s taxes “did not occur,” as his returns were only subjected to the mandatory audit once, in 2019, after Democrats inquired.
Those underlying documents, however, will need to undergo significant redactions first.
The release of Trump’s tax returns marks the conclusion of a nearly four-year legal battle, House Democrats waged against the former president after they took control of the House in 2019.
In a separate report, the Joint Committee on Taxation offered a summary of its review of tax returns between 2015 and 2020 for Trump and several of his businesses. The JCT noted in its report it had no investigatory power it couldn’t demand documents from Trump or his businesses or interview IRS agents assigned to Trump’s audits so the committee issued no opinion about whether Trump should have paid more or less taxes.
Evident in tax information broken out in the Joint Committee on Taxation report on Trump’s tax returns from 2015 to 2020 is Trump’s pattern as previously shown by a New York Times investigation of generating huge net operating losses and then carrying them forward for years afterward to zero out his tax liabilities.
For instance, the JCT noted that Trump carried forward $105 million in losses on his 2015 return, $73 million in 2016, $45 million in 2017 and $23 million in 2018.
A spokesperson for Trump accused House Democrats of playing politics for moving to release his tax returns to the public.
Writing by Tersoo Nicholas