The former president, who rejected modern tradition by keeping his returns private, fought the committee for almost four years. Democrats said they needed Mr. Trump’s records from 2015 to 2020 to assess an I.R.S. program that audits presidents.
A Committee will decide whether the former president’s returns are released publicly
The House Ways and Means Committee is expected to vote this afternoon on whether to publicly release the tax returns of former President Donald J. Trump, who kept his finances confidential during his campaign and while in office, in defiance of modern tradition. House Democrats and Mr. Trump engaged in a yearslong battle over the records that finally ended last month when the Supreme Court declined to block their release.
Here’s what to know:
- Almost immediately after Representative Richard E. Neal, the committee chairman, began the hearing at 3 p.m., the committee went into a closed session to debate the public release of Mr. Trump’s tax documents, so it could be hours before there’s a vote. And then it could take some time after that for anything to be released.
- Democrats have said they needed Mr. Trump’s records from 2015 to 2020 to assess an I.R.S. program that audits presidents. Republicans have insisted that rationale was a pretext for a politically motivated fishing expedition. Even before the hearing, committee Republicans made their view clear, holding a news conference in front of a bright red sign that read, “Dangerous new political weapon.”
- While the public release of the documents would provide the most up-to-date information about Mr. Trump’s finances, much is already known. The New York Times in 2020 released findings of an investigation into Mr. Trump’s tax-return data covering more than two decades. He paid no federal income taxes in 11 of 18 years that The Times examined; he also reduced his tax bill with questionable measures, including a $72.9 million tax refund that, as of 2020, was the subject of an I.R.S. audit.
- Prosecutors in New York had already obtained access to some Trump-related tax data, and his family business has been the subject of multiple investigations. The Trump Organization was convicted of a tax fraud scheme this month in a case brought by Manhattan prosecutors, and the New York attorney general has sue Mr Trum and three of his children, accusing them of lying to lenders and insurers by fraudulently overvaluing his assets.