News

Beyer Assails Trump “Questionable Tax Avoidance Schemes”

U.S. Rep. Don Beyer of Falls Church and Northern Virginia, a Member of the House Committee on Ways and Means, issued the following statement today after the publication of six years of former President Donald Trump’s tax returns:

“The materials released today were lawfully obtained by the Ways and Means Committee using its clear legal authority. Chairman Neal requested this tax information to inform our committee’s work on IRS tax enforcement, including the presidential audit program. The findings, already detailed in the committee’s report, show that this program was broken – justifying our legislative purpose, and leading to House passage of legislation to fix the problem on December 22nd.

“Despite promising to release his tax returns, Donald Trump refused to do so, and abused the power of his office to block basic transparency on his finances and conflicts of interest which no president since Nixon has foregone. Trump acted as though he had something to hide, a pattern consistent with the recent conviction of his family business for criminal tax fraud. As the public will now be able to see, Trump used questionable or poorly substantiated deductions and a number of other tax avoidance schemes as justification to pay little or no federal income tax in several of the years examined.

“These findings underscore the fact that our tax laws are often inequitable, and that enforcement of them is often unjust. Trump was able to bypass even the mandatory IRS presidential audit program for years, but many other wealthy and powerful people evade billions in tax dues every year through more quotidian tax avoidance. Congress has so much work to do to make tax enforcement in this country fairer, and that will continue to be a major priority for me as a member of the Ways and Means Committee going forward.”

Beyer voted on December 20 to release the Ways and Means Committee’s “Report on the Internal Revenue Service’s Mandatory Audit Program.