Donald Trump’s tax returns to be made public by US House panel on Friday

The House ways and means committee confirmed that the former president’s tax records from 2015 to 2021 will be released

Donald Trump’s redacted tax returns will be made public on Friday after a powerful congressional committee voted last week to release them.

A spokesperson for the US House of Representatives ways and means committee confirmed the timing of the release in a statement to Reuters on Tuesday.

The Democratic-controlled committee obtained the returns last month as part of an investigation into Trump’s taxes, after a lengthy court battle that ended with the US supreme court ruling in the committee’s favor.

The move is set to ignite a political firestorm in the US, where the former president’s taxes have long been a contentious matter. Trump broke with decades of presidential precedent by refusing to release his tax returns when he ran for office in 2016, and has fought to keep them under wraps.

The New York Times previously released extensive portions of Trump’s tax returns as part of a major investigation that showed how the real estate mogul and reality TV star had suffered serious losses and engaged in extensive tax avoidance.

The committee released a report into its findings last week, which said the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) broke its own rules by not auditing Trump for three of the four years of his presidency.

The findings raised stark questions about Trump’s insistence that he could not publicly release his tax returns – as other presidents routinely have done to give people a glimpse into their livelihoods – because he said his filings were under an ongoing IRS review. The committee’s report also highlighted shortcomings at the IRS, which has been criticized for auditing lower-income people more often than the rich.

The documents to be released on Friday are expected to include Trump’s tax returns filed between 2015 and 2021, the years he ran for and served as president. It would be the first formal release of his financial records from his time in office.

A spokesperson for Trump declined to comment.

Trump’s tax returns were not released alongside last week’s report because they contain sensitive information that had to be redacted before publication, committee members said.

Democrats on the committee said that making the returns public was necessary to understanding the context of its report, which also included proposed legislation that would mandate the IRS to audit presidents.

Trump was the first presidential candidate in decades not to release his tax returns during either of his campaigns for president. He also bragged during a presidential debate that year that he was “smart” because he paid no federal taxes.

Democrats on the committee had only a few weeks to decide how to handle the returns once they got them, before Republicans retake control of the US House in January after winning a narrow margin of victory in November’s midterm elections.

Reuters and the Associated Press contributed reporting

Guardian staff and agencies

The GuardianTramp

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