WASHINGTON – A majority of U.S. voters back Congressional Democrats in their quest to obtain President Donald Trump’s tax returns, according to a poll released Wednesday.
The Morning Consult/Politico poll found that 51 of the respondents said they support the effort to obtain Trump’s tax returns and 36 percent said they do not. Meanwhile, 13 percent said they are not sure if they support the effort to obtain Trump’s tax returns.
Eighty-three percent of Democrats said they support the effort to obtain Trump’s tax returns, compared with 18 percent of Republicans and 46 percent of independent voters.
The survey included 1,991 registered voters and was carried out Apr. 5-7. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
Last week House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) wrote a letter to IRS Commissioner Charlies Rettig that asked the agency to furnish the committee with six years worth of Trump’s personal and business tax returns.
White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney told “Fox News Sunday” last weekend that the request is a non-starter.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has the ultimate say over whether to release Trump’s tax returns. Mnuchin told Congress Tuesday he has discussed the matter with White House attorneys.
“It is our intent to follow the law,” he said.
The law permits the chairs of the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee to request the president’s tax returns.
Legal analysts have said the law is pretty straightforward and provides little room for maneuvering.
The controversy over Trump’s tax returns dates back to the 2016 presidential campaign, when he decided to break with a 40-year tradition in which candidates made their annual returns public.
Since taking office Trump has rejected requests to make his tax returns public, saying he is not able to do so because he is under audit. The IRS is not allowed to confirm an audit; the agency is prohibited by law from discussing a taxpayer’s finances without a court order.