Poll: Voters divided on Trump’s tax returns following NYT article

Greg Nash

Voters in a new poll were divided on whether it’s important that President Trump hasn’t released his tax returns, after The New York Times reported last week that the president and his family had participated in “dubious” tax schemes.

Forty-eight percent of registered voters said in the Morning Consult/Politico survey published Wednesday that they cared that Trump hasn’t made his returns public, while 43 percent said they didn’t care. Nine percent said they didn’t know or didn’t have an opinion.

{mosads}The poll results revealed a partisan divide, with 76 percent of Democrats, 50 percent of independents and 18 percent of Republicans reporting that they cared about Trump’s refusal to release his returns.

Trump became the first president in decades not to make his tax returns public. In January 2017, he said the public doesn’t care about his returns. He has also cited an ongoing IRS audit as a reason for not releasing the documents, though the IRS has said that audits don’t prevent taxpayers from making public their own tax information.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said last week, following publication of the Times article, that she’s not aware of any plans for Trump to release his tax returns.

Democrats have said they will request the returns from the Treasury Department if they take back control of the House in the November midterm elections. Under federal law, the chairmen of Congress’s tax committees can request the returns to view in a closed session. Lawmakers could then vote to make parts or all of the returns public.

The Times article said Trump and his family engaged in accounting practices during the 1990s that led to the president’s parents avoiding gift and estate taxes. Some of those schemes amounted to fraud, according to the Times.

Sixty-four percent of voters said in the Morning Consult/Politico survey they have heard “a lot” or “some” about the Times article. About three-quarters of Democrats and two-thirds of independents said they had heard a lot or some about the article, compared with 49 percent of Republicans who said the same.

The poll was conducted online Oct. 7 among a sample of 2,189 registered voters. It has a margin of error of 2 percentage points.

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