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Trump Taxes: What Will The Former President’s Financial Docs Reveal After Yearslong Battle

© REUTERS / OCTAVIO JONESFormer President Donald Trump arrives at the Sarasota Fairgrounds to speak to his supporters during the Save America Rally in Sarasota, Florida, U.S. July 3, 2021.
Former President Donald Trump arrives at the Sarasota Fairgrounds to speak to his supporters during the Save America Rally in Sarasota, Florida, U.S. July 3, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.08.2021
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Although many American presidents have sided with publicly disclosing their tax returns, former US President Donald Trump opted to sidestep the presidential routine and keep those financial disclosures under lock and key, in spite of congressional appeals and a criminal investigation. However, the times are a-changin’ now.
The US Department of Justice recently revealed that the US Treasury Department has to comply and provide a congressional panel with former US President Donald Trump’s tax returns, effectively bringing to a close a yearslong legal battle between lawmakers. 
The order came down in a 39-page memo issued on July 30 by Dawn Johnsen, the acting Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel who concluded that reasoning submitted by the House Ways and Means Committee was “sufficient.”
“We believe that there is ample basis to conclude that its June 2021 Request for former President Trump’s tax information would further the Committee’s principal stated objective of assessing the [Internal Revenue Service’s] presidential audit program - a plainly legitimate area for congressional inquiry and possible legislation," Johnsen wrote.
Trump and company had worked hard to reject any efforts to obtain the former president’s tax returns, with former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin saying that he would not release the highly-desired documents because they were being requested for partisan reasons.
© AP Photo / J. Scott ApplewhiteHouse Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., joins other House Democratic leaders at a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, July 30, 2021. The Justice Department said today the Treasury Department must provide the House Ways and Means Committee former President Donald Trump's tax returns, apparently ending a long legal showdown over the records.
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., joins other House Democratic leaders at a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, July 30, 2021. The Justice Department said today the Treasury Department must provide the House Ways and Means Committee former President Donald Trump's tax returns, apparently ending a long legal showdown over the records. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., joins other House Democratic leaders at a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, July 30, 2021. The Justice Department said today the Treasury Department must provide the House Ways and Means Committee former President Donald Trump's tax returns, apparently ending a long legal showdown over the records.
However, the committee had only sued for the financial disclosures in order to determine whether Trump had complied with US tax laws after concerns had been repeatedly raised in the public about Trump’s financial and business practices. It was also rooted in remarks made by Trump that he was unable to release the records during the 2016 election cycle because of an ongoing tax audit.
A fight for Trump’s taxes later escalated with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.’s efforts to obtain said documents. To date, the legal representative has managed to obtain copies of Trump’s personal and business records as part of his ongoing criminal investigation into the Trump Organization, but only after the matter reached the US Supreme Court.
While that court decision was not in Trump’s favor, a court order later determined that the former commander-in-chief would be granted 72 hours to appeal any move for the financial disclosures.
From offering a clearer idea on Trump’s net worth to his business ties and any piling debts, it’s safe to say that the disclosures will be warmly welcomed by the panel of congressional lawmakers.

Trump’s Real Net Worth

Forbes presently lists Trump as being the only billionaire president in American history after having amassed a wealth of roughly $2.4 billion. However, much of that fortune is actually tied up in real estate endeavors, many of which ended with contractors swindled or businesses toppled years down the road, such as the failed Atlantic City casino
Additionally, after having claimed in 2015 that he has a “total net worth of $8.73 billion,” it’s safe to say that the tax returns will officially lay down the details and possibly provide the public with a more realistic dollar figure, especially after past analysis found that Trump golfing businesses lost hundreds of millions of dollars over the years.
More specifically, details of any losses or gains that Trump’s real estate empire has collected over the last several years will more than likely be outlined in the Schedule E portion of the 1040 tax forms, where supplemental income and losses are detailed.
But that’s not all, folks. That very same section may also provide the name of any pass-through entity that is forking over any income to the taxpayer, in this case Trump via any residential, vacation or commercial properties. A “pass-through entity” is defined as a business structure in which a business’ income is handled as an owner’s personal income..
Any charitable donations that were made can also be spotted in Schedule A, with anything over $500 being fully detailed on a non-cash charitable contribution form that provides a summary on any item, such as a real estate property or artworks, along with its appraised market value. 

The Taxman’s Toll

Over yonder in Schedule A of US tax forms, lawmakers will also be able to get an idea of any deductible medical expenses, as well as state and local taxes that were paid during the specified tax year.
The matter of whether or not Trump has actually paid any taxes has remained one of the more prominent reasons for the tax standoff, which was only further bolstered by findings from the New York Times that Trump paid no federal income taxes in 11 of 18 years’ worth of tax filings that had been reviewed by the outlet.
The revelations further indicated that Trump’s tax bill to Uncle Sam in 2017 only came to $750, and that he managed to lower his family’s tax bill through a variety of loopholes.
© REUTERS / CARLOS BARRIAThen-U.S. President Donald Trump approaches reporters as he departs on campaign travel to Minnesota from the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, U.S., September 30, 2020.
Then-U.S. President Donald Trump approaches reporters as he departs on campaign travel to Minnesota from the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, U.S., September 30, 2020. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
Then-U.S. President Donald Trump approaches reporters as he departs on campaign travel to Minnesota from the South Lawn at the White House in Washington, U.S., September 30, 2020.
In fact, one scheme included handing over nearly $750,000 to his daughter Ivanka Trump for “consulting fees” even though she had been serving as a top executive at the Trump Organization.
More recently, reports indicated that Trump shifted money from donors into his businesses after saying goodbye to the Oval Office. According to Forbes, that business practice alone amounted to over $200,000.

Ties to An Organized Crime?

And then there’s Trump’s business partners, some of whom are reportedly tied to criminal organizations - think the Sicilian Mafia.
Whether or not Trump had any ties to La Cosa Nostra stole headlines early on in the 2016 election cycle after lawmakers and even one Republican presidential contender - US Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) - voiced such allegations.
At the time, Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) agreed that while the claims seemed unlikely, it was only right that Trump handed over the tax returns and gave the American public insight into “the veracity of a candidate's representations regarding charities, priorities, wealth, tax conformance, and conflicts of interest.”
However, even before Trump danced with the presidential post, he did indicate during an appearance on the “Late Show With David Letterman” in 2013 that he had come in contact with mafiosos “on occasion” while working in New York City, noting that such individuals can be “very nice people,” so long as you don’t owe them any money. 
© AFP 2021 / DOMINICK REUTERIn this file photo taken on January 16, 2017 US President-elect Donald Trump boards the elevator after escorting Martin Luther King III to the lobby after meetings at Trump Tower in New York City. - The Trump Organization is being investigated in a "criminal capacity" as New York prosecutors advance their probe into former president Donald Trump's business dealings, the state attorney general announced Tuesday. "We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature," a spokesman for Attorney General Letitia James' office said. "We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA."
In this file photo taken on January 16, 2017 US President-elect Donald Trump boards the elevator after escorting Martin Luther King III to the lobby after meetings at Trump Tower in New York City. - The Trump Organization is being investigated in a criminal capacity as New York prosecutors advance their probe into former president Donald Trump's business dealings, the state attorney general announced Tuesday. We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature, a spokesman for Attorney General Letitia James' office said. We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
In this file photo taken on January 16, 2017 US President-elect Donald Trump boards the elevator after escorting Martin Luther King III to the lobby after meetings at Trump Tower in New York City. - The Trump Organization is being investigated in a "criminal capacity" as New York prosecutors advance their probe into former president Donald Trump's business dealings, the state attorney general announced Tuesday. "We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature," a spokesman for Attorney General Letitia James' office said. "We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA."
Ties between Trump and the mob were also highlighted in decades-long findings by Pulitzer-winning reporter David Cay Johnston, who detailed in a 2016 piece for Politico that the construction of the Trump Plaza “most likely benefited from connection to racketeering.”
At this point, it’s anyone’s guess on what the former president’s taxes may soon reveal or not reveal if the president finds a way to block the Justice Department’s order. US Rep. Ted Lieu, earlier predicted on MSNBC that any attempts by Trump were likely not going to succeed, and that “it’s not going to be a huge amount of time” to get those documents.
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