As Democrats began a quest to get Trump's tax returns, Trump pushed Senate Republicans to confirm a new top lawyer at the IRS who once advised the Trump Organization.
Something here stinks.
The New York Times reported late Thursday night that Trump urged Senate Republicans to confirm a new top lawyer at the IRS who would oversee a legal battle over his tax returns — just as Democrats began their quest to obtain the tax documents Trump has been hiding since announcing his candidacy.
The nominee — Michael J. Desmond — has worked with Trump's company in the past, advising the Trump Organization on tax-related matters prior to Trump's presidency, Bloomberg News reported.
Desmond also worked with two people who serve as tax counsels for Trump's company: William Nelson and Sheri Dillon. Dillon, as you may recall, is the lawyer who spoke at Trump's wild news conference shortly before he took office to discuss how Trump would handle his vast array of conflicts of interest — which he is currently not doing a very good job of handling.
According to the New York Times report, Trump painted his request to install Desmond as a necessary personnel move to implement the GOP's tax scam law. However, the tax scam had passed in December 2017, more than a year before Trump pushed for Desmond's confirmation.
Desmond was ultimately confirmed on Feb. 27, and now will play a role in the fight over a congressional request for Trump's tax returns.
Desmond was confirmed a few weeks after Attorney General William Barr was confirmed. Barr is yet another crony, who is currently shielding Trump from being exposed by special counsel Robert Mueller's report — which appears to be much more damaging than Barr's lame summary made it out to be.
Trump, for his part, is the first president since Richard Nixon to not release their tax returns. He's used a bogus argument that his taxes are under audit as the reason he won't make them public. However, it's extremely unlikely that 10 years of his tax returns remain under review. Not to mention, being under audit is not an adequate excuse to keep the returns private, as Nixon released his returns when they were being audited.
But that hasn't stopped Trump from claiming he will continue to hide his returns from view.
During a press availability in the Oval Office on Wednesday, Trump said he was "not inclined" to release his tax returns.
Informed of House Ways & Means request for his tax returns, @POTUS says he's still under audit. "I'm always under audit it seems," He said until he's no longer under audit, he's "not inclined" to release his returns. Though the Congressional request was to the IRS - not to him. pic.twitter.com/Ga3xsQIpxn
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) April 3, 2019
Unfortunately for Trump, the law is the law and it's no longer his decision. Yet, unfortunately for the rest of us, there's yet another Trump-installed pal in his administration who will jump through hoops to protect the president.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.