In the News
Fox News: Dem demand to see Trump tax returns is dishonest political ploy threatening privacy of us all
May 07 2019
In their zeal to attack President Trump, Democrats have weaponized the FBI and Justice Department and have now moved on to the Internal Revenue Service. They continue to grasp at straws – to no avail – and no matter the cost.
A few weeks ago, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said many members of Congress might not have the technical background to understand President Trump’s tax returns if they became public.
That isn’t to say such members are unintelligent. I’d struggle to read a medical chart in physician jargon. But I do have expertise in understanding a tax return. That’s because I’m a certified public accountant and a lawyer.
I practiced tax law for 25 years and have reviewed countless tax returns. I sit on the House Ways and Means Committee, which just rewrote the tax code for the first time in 30 years.
It’s clear to me that the Democrats’ aggressive campaign to publicize the president’s tax returns is a dishonest political ploy that threatens the privacy of all American taxpayers.
On top of this, a tax return won’t produce the poison the Democrats are desperately searching for.
Congress long ago passed laws that require elected officials to submit detailed disclosures of their financial lives. These disclosure laws have been regularly updated, most recently in 2013. Notably, these laws don’t require disclosure of tax returns. Congress could have chosen to legally require disclosure of tax returns, but did not.
President Trump has fully complied with the financial disclosure laws set by Congress. His 92-page disclosure discusses his assets, income, transactions, liabilities, gifts, travel reimbursements and sources of compensation exceeding $5,000 in a year.
This disclosure document has been made readily available to anyone who wishes to view it. Democrats reviewed the president’s disclosure but didn’t find what they wanted to attack him.
What would the president’s federal income tax returns show? An idea of his income streams, assets he sold that year, and how much individual tax he paid.
The tax returns of the president’s business entities may have a balance sheet that would provide an idea of assets and liabilities.
But no matter how hard Democrats might try to convince you, there is no line on any tax form that would show President Trump colluded with Russia to get elected.
All told, 19 lawyers on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s staff spent two years combing through President Trump’s life, financial and otherwise, looking for collusion with Russia. They found none.
The Democrats now seem to believe that if you disagree with political opponents, you may use the tax code to fish for opportunities to discredit them. This is dangerous ground.
Regardless of these facts, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has made it clear her party will use all levers of government to “make these tax returns public.”
Regrettably, Democrats will continue waging all-out political warfare against our president, even if it means weaponizing another federal agency and jeopardizing the privacy of every single American.
Our failure to control our southern border is a national disgrace and Americans are paying the price. Unfair competition from illegal workers has diminished our middle class. The flood of illegal narcotics has brought misery and death to thousands of Americans.
Do not confuse legal immigration with illegal immigration. America is a very generous nation. We accept more than 1.1 million legal immigrants every year, far more than any other country.
However, unwilling to comply with our legal immigration system, hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens cross our southern border every year. We do not know the exact number of people that reside here illegally, but estimates range from 10 million to 20 million. This unlimited supply of cheap labor holds down wages and steals jobs from hard-working, law-abiding Americans. It is one of the reasons our middle class hasn’t grown or gotten a raise in decades. The most affected are the most vulnerable — those at the bottom of the income ladder. In a 2015 study, Harvard Professor George Borjas found that competition from low-skilled immigrants has reduced entry-level middle class wages by $800 to $1,500 each year.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi loves to complain about income inequality. Well, we have a chance to do something about it. Stop the endless flow of illegal labor and watch wages rise.
In 2017, 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses, up 100 percent over a decade, and it’s accelerating. Think about this: The drug epidemic kills more Americans than traffic deaths and homicides combined. The scourge of drug deaths may not be new, but it is exploding across America as gangs and drug cartels become more adept at exploiting our porous southern border. Drug Enforcement Administration reports confirm that 300 Americans die every week from heroin, 90 percent of which comes across our southern border.
In 2017, 134 of these opioid-related deaths were in South Carolina’s 7th Congressional District, which I represent. I asked local law enforcement officers how these deadly drugs are getting into the hands of my constituents. Their answers echoed fellow officers, border officials and drug enforcement agents across the country: the southern border. As President Trump has said, the status quo response to the crisis at our border is no longer effective.