Tax Preparation Gets Underway Ahead Of April Deadline
(Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Everyone seems to be in a panic over Donald Trump’s tax returns. Why won’t he release them? What’s he trying to hide?

Low income? Some nefarious business dealings with Russia or Saudi Arabia? Not enough to charity? Why won’t he come clean?

Well, guess what? The IRS manual states that the president and vice president's tax returns get "mandatory" examination, but they are under no obligation to release them to the public.

We Love The Negative

Those screaming the loudest for Trump to release his tax info are probably not expecting good news. He makes way more than anyone thought? Or "Ooooh, look how much he gives to underprivileged children and the poor." I think his critics would be very disappointed with that news.

No, I think they want to find the worst. He’s in big debt to our enemies, or worse.

Do You Know How To Read A Billionaire’s Tax Return?

Trump would most likely have both a personal tax return as well as one or more corporate tax returns to cover all the various worldwide holdings.

Many people do their own taxes because they’re simple. They get a W-2 for their income plug that into TurboTax or Quicken and presto your taxes are done.

Trumps return would probably be 4 to 6 feet tall by the time it’s all said and done.

Critics are going to turn to their news outlet of choice for what the return actually says. Few, if any, will even bother looking at the return online unless they just want to see the total income.

It All Started With Nixon

Nixon was the first president in office to release tax returns. Previous presidents did not release their taxes to the public.

Incoming presidents normally don’t release returns for the year before they assumed office. Even though they hold office when returns for that year come due. Carter didn’t. Reagan didn’t.

So you won’t find tax returns for Eisenhower, Kennedy or Johnson in the historical record.

Roosevelt and Truman’s were released after they left office and were part of the historical record in their respective libraries.

If you really want to see presidential tax returns for both presidents and candidates for president you’ll find them here.

Some Final Thoughts

Mitt Romney’s returns would probably be closest to Trump's. So you might want to use the link above to look at those.

Romney has both personal and some trust tax returns.

I still fall back on the good old trustworthy IRS. If they’re happy with Trump’s returns, why should I have a problem with them?

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