A Republican representative is blatantly calling out congressional Democrats for their repetitive attempts to get their hands on President Donald Trump’s tax returns.
Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.) slammed Democrats for allegedly “weaponizing” the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Department of Justice, and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as they “continue to grasp at straws – to no avail – and no matter the cost.”
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin missed the second deadline of April 23 laid out by Democrats to hand over six years of Trump’s personal and business tax returns — resulting in the treasury secretary to set May 6 as the date for a “final decision” on whether or not the tax returns will be released.
Rep. Rice penned a Fox News op-ed published on Friday where he wrote: “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,” the Republican lawmaker added.
Rice noted that the president has “fully complied” with congressional financial disclosure laws, by proving “his 92-page disclosure discusses his assets, income, transactions, liabilities, gifts, travel reimbursements and sources of compensation exceeding $5,000 in a year.”
But he said Democrats “didn’t find what they wanted to attack him.”
“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. […] 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.”
The Trump administration previously made it clear that once Trump is out of audit, he’ll “think about” releasing his tax returns, but “he’s not inclined to do so at this time,” White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said.
The president told reporters at the beginning of April that he’s “under audit” and that “the law is 100 percent on my side” over the tax return release, as IJR Blue noted.
Rep. Rice noted in his op-ed that the bottom line, in relation to the recent tensions of special counsel Robert Mueller’s final report, is: “There is no line on any tax form that would show President Trump colluded with Russia to get elected.”