Virtually every election campaign there’s some level of controversy regard politicians publishing their income taxes for voter scrutiny. We should be clear up-front this is NOT a legal requirement, it is merely “the way the game is played”, according to a popular west coast radio talk show host I agree with more often than not… except here. It’s what most politicians do, and it started with Richard Nixon and his famous “Checkers” speech in the 1952 presidential race when he was the VP nominee.
Since then politician almost fall all over themselves trying to prove how honest and pure they are by publishing their taxes, as well. And Ronn Owens… the talk show host I mentioned above… stated it, that’s how the game is now played. And he’s not wrong. But, should he be right?
Literally every citizen of the United States should be afforded some basic level of privacy, including their personal finances, even politicians, even Mr Trump. It is out-of-line for us to expect to see them. It is out-of-line for the media to demand them. It is out-of-line for other politicians to try and shame their opponents into releasing them. It’s a matter of basic human respect. I have never thought this has evolved to a good practice. Now, if a politician wants to volunteer them, that’s their business.
…which brings us to Donald Trump
Doesn’t everything bring us to Trump, but I digress. Anyway, what makes Trump’s defiance different is that he was so adamant during the 2016 campaign, combined with his immediate refusal the day before his inauguration, that makes his lack of action suspect and curious. If he really didn’t want to he shouldn’t have made such a big deal about it… and no, I don’t buy an audit would take this long, not even as complex as his might be. No, the man lied to you, and you bought it.
He fights tooth-and-nail to keep them from prosecutors. His lawyers claimed he would be embarrassed if they were made public knowledge. Which begs the question: What possibly could there be to be embarrassed about?
I am normally not prone to buy in to the “…if you have nothing to hide…” BS, but here with Mr Trump any reasonably analytical mind has to wonder.