11:54 GMT15 June 2021
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - A bill, newly introduced in Congress, would require sitting US presidents and vice-presidents, as well as candidates of major political parties vying for both positions, to release their ten most recent federal income tax returns, US lawmakers Anna Eshoo and Bill Pascrell Jr. said in a joint news release Wednesday.

    "Tax returns contain vital information for voters and the public, including whether an individual has paid any taxes," Congresswoman Eshoo said in the release. "Since the Watergate era, and up to the 2016 Presidential election, presidents and candidates have publicly disclosed their tax returns voluntarily but this bipartisan practice has never been required by law. The Presidential Tax Transparency Act, which I first introduced during the 2016 presidential race, makes this important precedent the law of the land."

    President Donald Trump broke a long-standing tradition when he became the first candidate since the 1960s to not release his personal tax returns during the 2016 presidential election.

    "While we continue to work to expose Donald Trump’s tax returns to vital congressional sunlight, this legislation will codify that future candidates cannot repeat Trump’s cover-up," Congressman Pascrell Jr. said in the release.

    According to the Tax History Project, every president since 1976 has released their tax returns while in office except Trump.

    READ MORE: Democrats to Probe Trump Tax Returns If They Win Midterms — Senator

    The legislation also states that should a president or candidate fail to disclose their tax returns, the Internal Revenue Service would be required to provide redacted copies to the Federal Election Committee for public disclosure.

    READ MORE: Trump Tax Return Matter Included in State Anti-Corruption Case

    bill, tax returns, Donald Trump
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