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Kamala Harris releases 15 years of taxes, reveals $2 million income; Sanders to release his Monday

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Sen. Kamala Harris joined the ranks of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates who have shared their tax returns, releasing 15 years of filing Sunday. 

The returns date back to her tenure as the district attorney for San Francisco and when her total income of $144,000 consisted almost entirely of her salary.

The California Democrat’s income jumped substantially after her marriage to attorney Douglas Emhoff. The couple began filing jointly in 2014 and showed a total income of more than $2 million for 2018. She and Emhoff paid more than $2.2 million in taxes over the past five years with an average effective tax rate of more than 32%. Most of the money comes from Emhoff’s practice. He reported more than $1 million in income in each of their joint returns. 

None of Harris’ primary opponents has released as many years of returns, which the Harris campaign said makes “her the most transparent candidate in the field when it comes to information about her personal finances.” 

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Vermont’s Sen. Bernie Sanders said he will release 10 years worth of returns Monday. 

Other Democratic candidates who have released their tax returns include Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. Gillibrand and Inslee released 12 years of returns from 2007 to 2018, Warren released 11 years from 2008 to 2018 and Klobuchar released 12 years from 2006 to 2017. 

Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke and former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro said they would disclose their tax returns, The Texas Tribune reported. New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker – who released 15 years of taxes during his 2013 Senate campaign – and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg also pledged to release their returns. 

Democrats derided President Donald Trump’s refusal to make his tax returns public. Since the 2016 campaign, Trump has said he would share them but cannot because he is under audit, even though IRS officials said being under audit would not prevent such a disclosure. 

“The president has been clear from the beginning, as long as his taxes are under audit, he’s not going to release them,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said on “Fox News Sunday.” 

Harris’ campaign said Sunday that the release of her tax returns “is a stark contrast with President Trump” and that she “supports congressional legislation requiring a president’s tax returns to be made public.” 

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., asked the IRS to hand over six years of Trump’s tax returns, citing a law that says the Treasury Department “shall furnish” the committee with “any return or return information” upon request. Trump’s attorneys argued the release requires “legitimate legislative purpose.” 

Last week, Treasury Department Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Neal the department would not be able to review his request in time to meet his initial deadline of April 10. 

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Saturday, Neal wrote a letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig setting a new deadline of 5 p.m. April 23. “If you fail to comply, your failure will be interpreted as a denial of my request,” Neal said. 

Neal said the law is “unambiguous and raises no complicated legal issues” and “it is not the proper function of the IRS, Treasury, or Justice to question or second guess the motivations of the Committee.”

He said, “Concerns about what the Committee may do with the tax returns and return information are baseless.” 

On Sunday, Sanders called Neal’s request “a disgusting overreach” and “a dangerous road.” She said she doubted that “this group of congressmen and women are smart enough” to “look through the decades of success that the president has had and determine anything.” 

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Sandy Stier, center left, and Kris Perry, at right, exchange wedding vows in front of California Attorney General Kamala Harris, left, at City Hall in San Francisco, onJune 28, 2013. Stier and Perry, the lead plaintiffs in the U.S. Supreme Court case that overturned California’s same-sex marriage ban, tied the knot about an hour after a federal appeals court freed same-sex couples to obtain marriage licenses for the first time in 4 1/2 years. Marcio Jose Sanchez, APLeft to right, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., ranking member, Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, Sen. Kamala D. Harris, D-Calif., speak before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Sept.27, 2018. Melina Mara, The Washington Post via AP, Pool

  • San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris speaks to supporters before a No on K press conference October 29, 2008 in San Francisco. San Francisco ballot measure Proposition K seeks to stop enforcing laws against prostitution.1 of 11
  • California Attorney General Kamala Harris appears before an Assembly committee at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., on May 10, 2012. 2 of 11
  • Kamala Harris, Attorney General of California, with Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley, present Rules Committee report, during the Democratic National Convention Sept. 4, 2012 in Charlotte, N.C.  3 of 11
  • Sandy Stier, center left, and Kris Perry, at right, exchange wedding vows in front of California Attorney General Kamala Harris, left, at City Hall in San Francisco, onJune 28, 2013. Stier and Perry, the lead plaintiffs in the U.S. Supreme Court case that overturned California's same-sex marriage ban, tied the knot about an hour after a federal appeals court freed same-sex couples to obtain marriage licenses for the first time in 4 1/2 years.4 of 11
  • Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Kamala Harris greets supporters at a election night rally Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016 in Los Angeles. 5 of 11
  • President Barack Obama walks with California Attorney General Kamala Harris, center, and  California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, after arriving at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco, on Feb. 16, 2012.6 of 11
  • Sen. Kamala Harris walks to the Senate chamber for a series of 6 roll call votes regarding the Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Resolution on Capitol Hill, on October 18, 2017 in Washington.7 of 11
  • Sen. Kamala Harris speaks during the Women's March on Washington, Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017 in Washington.8 of 11
  • Left to right, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., ranking member, Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, Sen. Kamala D. Harris, D-Calif., speak before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Sept.27, 2018.9 of 11
  • Sen. Kamala Harris speaks during the hearing for Supreme Court Associate Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Sept. 4, 2018 in Washington. 10 of 11
  • Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., speaks with her aides during a break from testimony from Attorney General nominee William Barr at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Jan. 15, 2019.11 of 11

 

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