Donald Trump lashed out against the Democrats for releasing his tax records, saying the dangerous precedent that could lead to 'horrible things for so many people'. He also said the US Supreme Court should not have approved the release of his tax records.
The former president said the radical Left Democrats' decision to 'weaponize everything' will increase the great 'USA divide'. He reminded the Democrats that the path they have trodden is a 'dangerous two-way street'.
"The Democrats should have never done it, the Supreme Court should have never approved it, and it's going to lead to horrible things for so many people," Trump said in a statement.
The voluminous tax records span more than 2,700 pages of individual returns of Trump and his wife Melania Trump, besides some 3,000 pages that cover his business enterprises.
The records released by the House Ways and Means Committee cover the years 2015 through 2020. In late November, the Supreme Court cleared the release of Trump's tax returns to the House of Representatives committee, handing a defeat to the Republican former president who had called the Democratic-led panel's request politically motivated.
According to a summary of the voluminous report made by the Joint Committee on Taxation, Trump had declared negative income in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2020, while he paid a total of $1,500 in income taxes for the years 2016 and 2017.
Trump Defends Use of Tax Incentives
Hitting back at the political detractors, Trump insisted that returns showed that he was just using various tax incentives to build businesses that offered jobs to thousands of people.
"The 'Trump' tax returns once again show how proudly successful I have been and how I have been able to use depreciation and various other tax deductions as an incentive for creating thousands of jobs and magnificent structures and enterprises," he said in the statement.
Will the Release of Tax records Destroy Trump's Political Career?
The release of the Trump records come at a time when the former president is ramping up his campaign for a third shot at the White House. The release of sensitive documents will offer a potent weapon to his political opponents even as he gears up for the 2024 White House race.
However, according to analysts, Trump's core supporters are unlikely to dump him over the tax details. They cite the tax case against the Trump Organization earlier, saying that negative news about his business and personal records do not necessarily lead to a political setback for the president.
Political strategist Jay Oliver told Newsweek that while the newly-released tax information seems "catastrophic" and comparable to "a ball dropping on New Year's Eve" in reality, it's not as consequential "if you are Donald Trump."
The tax records "will not damper the hopes of another four years at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue," Political strategist Jay Oliver told the Newsweek. "He's skirted other issues, and there's no doubt he will delay the inevitable here," the strategist said. He also said that Trump has a team of 'countless lawyers' who will get down with the intricacies of the case. There is going to be a series of long legal battles that Trump can use to accentuate his image of being aggressively persecuted by his political enemies.
Another strategist told the publication that the bombshell release can actually give Trump new weapons. "The release of these tax forms is likely to be a mistake ... It will feed into his political persecution narrative and Trump will keep on keeping on," Republican strategist Alex Patton told Newsweek.