Virginia pols weigh in on Trump tax, finance disclosure
You’ve no doubt heard, read, been beaten about the head at this point, the news from a New York Times report that President Trump pays almost no federal taxes and is significantly under water financially.
Trump, let’s note here, no surprise, is trying to pass it off as “fake news,” though, significantly, he could just release his tax records himself to refute the contentions, and he’s still refusing to do that, which probably tells you what you need to know.
Virginia pols are weighing in.
As you could guess, it’s not Republicans playing defense.
First, we’ll go to Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA-08):
“The revelation that Donald Trump paid almost no personal income taxes for many years is not surprising, but it is outrageous. Far more important, however, is Trump’s use of the government for his personal benefit rather than that of the American people.
“Even as Trump took advantage of tax laws that benefit the wealthy, quite possibly in illegal ways, he worked with Republicans to make those laws in many ways even more beneficial to the super-rich. More than half of American households have an annual income smaller than the sum Trump wrote off for hair expenses, yet his most consistent policy initiative has been his attempts to weaken their health care protections.
“Trump offset the substantial losses of his personally-branded properties by using his office to boost the profile of those properties. He welcomed the patronage of rich supporters and wealthy corporations who in many cases were rewarded with influence. He spent American taxpayer dollars at his properties with frequent visits, and solicited the support of foreign investors and governments through unconstitutional emoluments. The national security ramifications of his corruption are grave.
“It is likely that we will be uncovering the full measure of Donald Trump’s lies about his personal finances and abuses of power for personal profit for years to come. Congress has an important role in oversight, given these revelations, and in correcting the deeply flawed system that allows such awful inequality.”
Next up is Congressman Donald McEachin (D-VA-04):
“Befitting his pattern of selling out the American people throughout his presidency, today’s reporting by the New York Times paints a grim picture of Trump as a grifter who paid more in income taxes to foreign governments than to the United States.
“As a young man, Trump avoided the draft, at all costs as President he has avoided the truth and now we know that for almost two decades, he avoided paying his fair share in income taxes by leveraging federal tax loopholes to prop up his personal failures.
“In stark contrast to his America First rhetoric, his tax returns prove Trump was committed only to his own interests long before he was president and he has wielded the power of our nation’s highest office for his own personal benefit to recoup losses from years of financial misdeeds. It is clear the only thing the President has ever been interested or successful in promoting is his brand, built on a farce of business savvy and a very real, compounding pile of debt.
“Just as he will face American voters at the polls in November to answer for the the depths of his deception towards the American public during the COVID-19 crisis and the damage he has done to our democracy, the bill is coming due for his dubious business dealings.”
Story by Chris Graham