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Eshoo introduces bill requiring presidents, candidates to release tax returns

Original post made on Jan 6, 2017

Rep. Anna G. Eshoo introduced a new bill in Congress on Thursday that would require presidents and presidential candidates to publicly release their tax returns.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, January 5, 2017, 5:27 PM

Comments (22)

12 people like this
Posted by Dr. Sarcastic
a resident of Gemello
on Jan 6, 2017 at 9:42 am

I'm sure this will sail right through Congress and Trump will sign it without delay.


60 people like this
Posted by bob
a resident of Slater
on Jan 6, 2017 at 2:25 pm

You first Anna.


117 people like this
Posted by Space Cadet
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Jan 6, 2017 at 2:49 pm

Anna - don't you have anything more important to do?


16 people like this
Posted by Trumpists
a resident of Bailey Park
on Jan 6, 2017 at 3:40 pm

Looks like the Trump supporters above are salty about this. Keep it up, Anna! If they're this mad, you have to be on the right track :)


58 people like this
Posted by Otto Maddox
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jan 6, 2017 at 3:52 pm

"The American people justifiably expect those who seek or hold the highest office in the land to be open and transparent about their tax returns."

Uh.. this is plainly untrue since Trump won. It means people were willing to vote for him without seeing his tax returns.

The requirements to be President are clearly written in the Constitution. It says nothing about disclosing any information other than your age and where you were born.

I know Donald Trump has turned the American political world upside down but enough with the nonsense.

The Democrats need to learn a lot of lessons from this and come out strong in 2020. Offer people several viable candidates. Otherwise we'll get 4 more years of President Trump.

And no one at this point better dare say "There's no way." That's what got us into this mess in the first place.


3 people like this
Posted by Alex M
a resident of Willowgate
on Jan 6, 2017 at 9:44 pm

Too little, too late. Besides, we all know Trump paid no taxes. That's why he refused to show his tax returns. My reaction is "Meh. Who really cares?" If he paid no tax, the problem lies with the tax code, not those who take advantage of it. And no I didn't vote for him, I think his will be a train wreck of a presidency. But the tax return? That's a non-issue.


4 people like this
Posted by Appreciative
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jan 7, 2017 at 8:02 am

Way to go Anna! Really appreciate your continuing emphasis on transparency.


14 people like this
Posted by Anna You're Wrong
a resident of Rex Manor
on Jan 7, 2017 at 1:31 pm

Anna, you first, especially the years with your former husband and his antics.

Just another shaming tactic to use in the political propaganda wars.

Your finances are private. Period.

To Appreciative, hope you said the same regarding the government emails...hypocrite!


8 people like this
Posted by psr
a resident of The Crossings
on Jan 8, 2017 at 1:10 am

More posturing that Hillary would never have been subject to should she have won.

I guess it will be more years of Eshoo doing nothing of substance. No surprise here.


9 people like this
Posted by AllYouCanEat
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jan 8, 2017 at 8:43 am

Anna, get over it. The elections are over.


Like this comment
Posted by True
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Jan 10, 2017 at 11:21 pm

No fan of Trump but I can't help but wonder if Anna would be willing to amend this piece of legislation to include all members of the 3 co-equal branches of Government.

Ya think Rep Pelosi and Sen Feinstein would be down with that?


29 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 8:35 am

Do people actually oppose requiring presidential candidates to release their tax returns, or are the posters here just being contrary? It seems like a pretty basic good government policy to help the American people make an informed decision.


29 people like this
Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 11, 2017 at 10:02 am

Jim Neal is a registered user.

I'd actually be far more interested in finding out about the health of the candidate than their taxes. Strangely enough, the New York Times didn't seem to think that the health of a future President should matter ( Web Link )


Most likely the media will try to seize on anything that they think will embarrass the new President or distract him from the far more important issues that are facing our country. They appear to be far more disturbed by the fact that President Trump paid only the taxes that he was LEGALLY required to, than the fact that Hillary Clinton was able to turn $1000 into $100,000 in 10 months by trading cattle futures ( Web Link ). Of course, I would never question Hillary's expert knowledge of the cattle industry.


Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


29 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 10:35 am

Jim, I didn't ask which you'd be more interested in learning about, I asked whether you oppose that requirement, which is a question you conveniently dodged.

This is the same thing we saw above, where no one actually says they are opposed to it, they just change the subject to some other thing. It must be a good idea, since no one has said they're opposed.


26 people like this
Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 11, 2017 at 12:01 pm

Jim Neal is a registered user.

@Tax Returns- I wasn't responding to you or I would have used your name as I just did. When I respond to people, I always use their names so it is clear.

I was making general comments regarding and directly related to the article and giving my personal opinion about what is more important to me; as well as contrasting how this issue has been handled. Taxes and Cattle Futures both involve financial transactions; and whereas one paid what was legally required, the other was able to miraculously generate a 10000% return on investment.

Since you so nicely asked me directly for my opinion, then I have to first say that providing tax returns is not a requirement and never has been. That being said, I see no reason for it to be a requirement any more than a President should be required to provide their college transcripts (which could show how intelligent the candidate is or is not) or any other documents not required by law. So yes, I am opposed to it for ANY candidate.



Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


29 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 12:30 pm

@Jim, your logic is circular and poorly formed. We're discussing what the law SHOULD be, yet for some reason you say that you see no reason for it to be a requirement that they provide any documents not required by law.

Congress creates laws, Anna Eshoo is our Congressperson, so she has proposed a law. Disagreeing with a proposed law solely because it adds a requirement for something not currently legally required is...poorly thought out to say the least.

If you think the American people should not see a candidate's tax returns unless that candidate decides to release them, that's a fair argument to make, but I'd disagree with you on good government and transparency grounds.


23 people like this
Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 11, 2017 at 1:06 pm

Jim Neal is a registered user.

@Tax Returns - First you say that I am dodging your question when I was clearly not even responding to you; then when I respond to your statement "Jim, I didn't ask which you'd be more interested in learning about, I asked whether you oppose that requirement, which is a question you conveniently dodged.", you accuse me of engaging in circular arguments. You stated that it was a requirement and I responded that it is not. I then went on to say that I saw no reason for it "to be a requirement" (future tense),

I oppose any "new" requirement for tax returns because it is irrelevant and appears to be politically motivated. Otherwise why not add or substitute far more important requirements such as medical records?

Only rich people can run for President so what is to be gained from looking at the tax returns? If a candidate has done anything illegal from a tax standpoint, the IRS is more than well equipped to file charges that can result in fines and/or imprisonment; therefore, it can be deduced that the only reason to obtain them is to try to find something that can be exploited for political gain. Candidates have no obligation to provide their opposition with information they can distort and use against them.

In 2012, Romney was accused of not filing tax returns for 10 years, which was later proven to be a lie ( Web Link ). Oddly enough, now some are saying that Trump has not paid taxes for 25 years. I suppose for the next candidate it will be 50 years.


Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


26 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 1:34 pm

@Jim, you'd be better served to actually read the text of what I write, it may help you in understanding. As it is, your recap of what occurred is inaccurate at best.

The fact of the matter is that most Americans do not find the tax returns of presidential candidates to be irrelevant (74% of likely voters and 62% of Republican likely voters! Web Link). I'm happy to listen to disagreements, the fact that something may be politically motivated is not an attack on its merits. Politicians of all stripes are quite often politically motivated, but we should still judge their proposals and actions on the merits.

I agree that medical records are important, as well, and would whole-heartedly support such a requirement. Openness, transparency, and sunshine are unambiguously good for government.


22 people like this
Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 11, 2017 at 2:17 pm

Jim Neal is a registered user.

@Tax Returns - I read and actually quoted what you wrote. So there is nothing inaccurate there.

And what difference does it make what percentages of voters think? You asked me for MY opinion and I gave it. I don't form my opinions just because of polls which may or may not be accurate. The poll in your link is from August 2016 and yet Trump was elected in November 2016 when the polls at that time showed he had only a 10-30% chance of victory. I may not always be right, but I always form my opinions based on my experiences and personal preferences.

Lastly, nowhere in my comments did I use the words "politically motivated". I talked about information being "distorted" or "exploited for political gain"; a distinction with a huge difference.

If openness and transparency were the the goals, then I might agree with you; but after seeing the way the media handled the coverage of the campaign, and the constant misuse of information and misinformation, I don't believe that to be the case. In my opinion, if the purpose of a law is to use it primarily to distort someone's record or mislead the public, then it has no merit.



Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


24 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 2:24 pm

@Jim, do you not remember writing this:

"I oppose any "new" requirement for tax returns because it is irrelevant and appears to be politically motivated. Otherwise why not add or substitute far more important requirements such as medical records?"

That has the exact words "politically motivated" in it. You wrote it an hour ago.


20 people like this
Posted by Jim Neal
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 11, 2017 at 2:52 pm

Jim Neal is a registered user.

@Tax Returns - Yes, you are correct. I did use that term in speaking about this case in prior comments; however, I also said:

"Only rich people can run for President so what is to be gained from looking at the tax returns? If a candidate has done anything illegal from a tax standpoint, the IRS is more than well equipped to file charges that can result in fines and/or imprisonment; therefore, it can be deduced that the only reason to obtain them is to try to find something that can be exploited for political gain. Candidates have no obligation to provide their opposition with information they can distort and use against them."


This clearly distinguishes that my opposition is not just the political motivation in and of itself but the intent to misuse the information or to use it to mislead people and you did not address that in your comment.


You said "I'm happy to listen to disagreements, the fact that something may be politically motivated is not an attack on its merits. Politicians of all stripes are quite often politically motivated, but we should still judge their proposals and actions on the merits". In my opinion, I don't think a law that requires a candidate to provide information that will be distorted or used to mislead the public has any merit.


Jim Neal
Old Mountain View


18 people like this
Posted by Tax Returns
a resident of Castro City
on Jan 11, 2017 at 3:25 pm

@Jim, thank you for admitting your mistake.

At this point, we'll have to agree to disagree, but I'm certainly thankful that the majority of Americans agree with me and Representative Eshoo that we need more transparency in our government and elections.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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