Friday, February 24, 2017

We will see Trump's tax returns some day

I think we will eventually see Donald Trump's tax returns. Either they will be subpoenaed by a Congressional committee, released under that obscure 1924 law,  obtained in discovery in one of the many lawsuits that Trump already is or will be involved in, or just leaked. Those first two options would probably have to wait until after Democrats retake one of the chambers of Congress (but not necessarily!)

The most likely way for it to come out is with some leak because the Trump administration has been leaking like crazy. One side effect of deconstructing the administrative state is that it makes enemies of the administrators of the administrative state, people who have worked for years and generally believe in what they have been doing. That's why we have all these alt-gov twitter accounts, as well as other those other leaks that have driven the news since inauguration day. I don't know how many IRS employees would be able to retrieve Trump's tax returns, but some set of people in the IRS could do it. Even though it is a criminal offense to publicly release someone's return, I would not be surprised if eventually someone tried it.

And that's only counting the people in the IRS. Trump did not prepare his own tax return. I bet his accountants and lawyers have copies as well. Those firms have file clerks, secretaries, janitors, and plenty of other under-the-radar people who could squirrel away copies if they notice an extremely recognizable name on a file.

I really think it will happen eventually. The only question is how long it will take before we see them.