Tax-return whistleblower in spotlight amid impeachment fight

The whistleblower complaint though is largely shrouded in mystery, with few public details.

Its existence was first revealed by the Democratic-led House Ways and Means Committee in court documents in August in its lawsuit for Trump’s tax returns. In an Aug. 8 letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin included in a filing, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) said his panel received information from a federal employee on July 29 that included credible allegations of “inappropriate efforts to influence” the IRS mandatory program of auditing presidents and vice presidents.

A whistleblower allegation about possible misconduct in the IRS presidential tax-return audit program is receiving new attention amid House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

House Democrats are focused on a separate whistleblower complaint that President Trump allegedly urged Ukraine to investigate his political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden. But progressive groups are also banging the drum over the tax complaint, urging leaders to disclose more information and arguing it could be crucial to Democrats’ oversight.

“We’ve been overwhelmed with scandal and secrecy with Trump’s presidency the entire time,” said Maura Quint, executive director of the progressive group Tax March. “I think now we’ve got the Democrats trying to hone in on what’s been going on, and I think the common link that we’ve been seeing is that since before he took office, he’s been trying to hide his tax returns.”

In an already politically charged Washington, the tax complaint bears the makings of a new political football.

Article URL : https://thehill.com/policy/finance/464469-tax-return-whistleblower-in-spotlight-amid-impeachment-fight

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