The Trump campaign has doubled down on its insistence the Republican presidential nominee will not be making his tax returns public amid recent rumors he is shielding Russian business interests.
"Mr. Trump has said that his taxes are under audit and he will not be releasing them," Donald Trump’s campaign chief Paul Manafort told CBS “This Morning” on Wednesday. “It has nothing to do with Russia, it has nothing to do with any country other than the United States and his normal tax auditing process.”
It is customary for presidential candidates to make their tax returns public, but Trump has bucked that convention saying his financial information is “none of [the public’s] business.” The billionaire businessman has been called on throughout the campaign to release them, but even after being officially crowned the nominee last week at the Republican National Convention, Trump has refused.
Calls have gotten louder as details of a sophisticated cyberhack on the Democratic National Committee unfold, with security experts claiming Russian state actors are likely behind the intrusion. They told the White House they have “high confidence” Moscow was behind the attack, but haven’t yet determined the specific motive.
Clinton has released tax returns dating back to 1977.
Documents obtained in the hack, published by Wikileaks over the weekend, reveal the DNC was disproportionately helping Hillary Clinton over her rival Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. Democrats have alleged that the Russians were hacking the Democrats in hope of obtaining information that would help Trump in the general election because the Republican nominee has publicly complimented Russian President Vladimir Putin and has questioned the utility of the NATO alliance created to deter aggression from the Kremlin.
When asked Tuesday about the possibility Russia was trying to influence American elections because they would benefit from a Trump presidency rather than a Clinton one, President Barack Obama said “anything’s possible.”
Trump has dismissed the accusations and wrote Tuesday on Twitter that he has “ZERO investments in Russia.”