Biden tax returns show $15.6M in 2017-18 income

Biden tax returns show $15.6M in 2017-18 income

Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenFive takeaways from Trump-Biden debate clash The Memo: Debate or debacle? Democrats rip Trump for not condemning white supremacists, Proud Boys at debate MORE on Tuesday released his tax returns from 2016 to 2018, showing his income increased significantly after leaving office. 

Biden's federal tax return for 2016, his last full year as vice president, showed adjusted gross income of nearly $400,000, while his 2017 federal tax return reported adjusted gross income of more than $11 million.


His 2018 federal tax return reported adjusted gross income of nearly $4.6 million.

Biden filed his tax returns jointly with his wife, Jill, during those three years

The release of the documents comes during the former vice president's 2020 presidential campaign. Many of the other Democratic presidential candidates released their tax returns earlier this year.

Biden's income of $15.6 million in 2017 and 2018 greatly exceeds the incomes reported on the tax returns of other prominent 2020 candidates, including Sens. Bernie SandersBernie SandersTrump, Biden clash over health care as debate begins Biden calls Trump a 'liar' and a 'clown' at first debate Biden mocks Trump campaign debate claims: 'I've got my earpiece and performance enhancers ready' MORE (I-Vt.), Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisThe Memo: Debate or debacle? Biden will keep debating Trump, campaign says Joe Scarborough urges Biden: 'Do not do anymore debates' MORE (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren won't meet with Barrett, calling Trump's nomination an 'illegitimate power grab' The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump's tax bombshell | More election drama in Pennsylvania | Trump makes up ground in new polls New Biden campaign ad jabs at Trump's reported 0 income tax payments MORE (D-Mass.), as well as South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete ButtigiegPete ButtigiegCindy McCain joins board of Biden's presidential transition team Billionaire who donated to Trump in 2016 donates to Biden The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - GOP closes ranks to fill SCOTUS vacancy by November MORE.

Harris and her husband reported the next highest amount of income in 2018, just under $1.9 million.

The former vice president's campaign said that the Bidens' income in 2016 primarily came from Joe Biden's salary as vice president and Jill Biden's salary as a professor at Northern Virginia Community College.

The majority of the Bidens' post-presidential income — more than $10 million in 2017 and about $2.3 million in 2018 — came from book payments and paid speaking engagements.

Joe Biden also earned about $370,000 in 2017 and about $405,000 in 2018 from being a professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Jill Biden continued teaching at Northern Virginia Community College in those years.

The Bidens had effective tax rates of 23.5 percent, 33.9 percent and 33.4 percent for 2016, 2017 and 2018, respectively. They donated to charity 1.5 percent of their adjusted gross income in 2016, 9.2 percent in 2017 and 6 percent in 2018.

During the 2008 campaign, the Bidens faced criticism for regularly reporting annual charitable contributions of less than $1,000 in preceding years. In 2018, the Bidens donated a greater percentage of their income to charity than many of the other 2020 presidential candidates did.

The former vice president's campaign said the couple filed amended 2017 and 2018 tax returns following a "comprehensive review" of their tax filings.

The original 2017 tax return unintentionally double-counted a charitable donation and failed to include income and associated withholdings from the last few weeks that Joe Biden served as vice president.

The original 2018 tax return included a deduction for a donation to a British charity associated with Prince Harry that doesn't have a 501(c)(3) designation.

In addition to releasing his tax returns from 2016 to 2018, Joe Biden also released a financial disclosure form that covers the period from Jan. 1, 2018 through May 31, 2019.

Biden's campaign said the form shows that the former vice president earned about $3.2 million through an S-Corporation during that period for writing and speaking engagements. Many of the fees he was paid for speaking engagements were part of his book tour.

Biden released his tax returns on an annual basis while he was vice president, and also released 10 years of tax returns in 2008. That contrasts with President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from Trump-Biden debate clash The Memo: Debate or debacle? Democrats rip Trump for not condemning white supremacists, Proud Boys at debate MORE, who has not made any of his tax returns public. 

Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceBiden, Trump clash at vicious, ugly debate Supreme Court nominee gives no clues in GOP meeting Trump administration pressured CDC to play down risks of reopening schools: report MORE released tax returns from 2006 to 2015 during the 2016 presidential campaign, but hasn't released tax returns since taking office.

Trump has said that he won't release his tax returns while under audit, though the IRS has said that audits don't prevent people from making public their own tax information.

House Democrats are trying to obtain Trump's tax returns under a provision of the federal tax code that allows the chairs of Congress's tax committees to request tax returns from the Treasury Department. Last week the Ways and Means Committee filed a lawsuit, asking a judge to order Treasury and the IRS to comply with their requests and subpoenas for Trump's tax returns.

 - updated at 6:30 p.m.