Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch said Wednesday that he would be “happy” to look into President Donald Trump’s tax returns in the wake of The New York Times report that says Trump helped “his parents dodge taxes” in the 1990s, including “instances of outright fraud.”
“It’s funny they wouldn’t bring that up by the election (2016),” the Utah Republican told CNN’s Manu Raju. “I’d be happy to look into it. But right now, I don’t know enough about it.”
Democrats, including Trump’s opponent Hillary Clinton, often slammed Trump for not releasing his tax returns during the 2016 election. Clinton questioned what Trump was hiding by not releasing his returns, saying, “So you have got to ask yourself, why does he not release them?” during a May 2016 campaign stop.
When asked if Trump should release his tax returns, Hatch said: “He may have to — he may have to give up those returns,” but wouldn’t commit to seeking the returns himself. “I don’t know,” he said. “I’ve been in so many things.”
“If I was him, I wouldn’t want to give them up,” Hatch added.
The Times investigation reported that Trump had received at least $413 million in today’s dollars from his father’s real estate empire by hiding millions in gifts in a “sham corporation” along with his siblings. Trump dismissed the report in a tweet Wednesday as “very old, boring and often told hit piece.”
Trump’s lawyer, Charles Harder said the report was “100% false” in a statement Tuesday.
During his campaign for office, then-candidate Trump broke with presidential election norms when he refused to produce his tax returns for public review. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Wednesday she is “not aware of any plans” for the President to release his tax returns.