229 House Republicans just voted to keep Trump’s tax returns secret

Judd Legum

Judd Legum Editor-in-Chief, Think Progress

House Republicans voted en masse to block a resolution that would have forced Trump to turn his tax returns over to Congress on Monday night.

The measure was introduced by Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), a member of the House Ways and Means Committee. Under a 1924 law, the Ways and Means Committee is empowered to examine tax returns. The committee could then decide to release them to the full Congress, effectively making them public.

Trump has broken with decades of precedent and refused to release his tax returns, citing an ongoing audit.

Pascrell first brought his request to the Chairman of the Way and Mean Committee, Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX). Brady rejected the request, citing concern for Trump’s “civil liberties.”

Pascrell was able to bring the issue to a full vote on the floor through a vehicle known as a “privileged resolution.”

“The American people have the right to know whether or not their president is operating under conflicts of interest related to international affairs, tax reform, government contracts or otherwise,” Pascrell said.

Republicans in the House disagreed, virtually unanimously. Nearly every Republican voted to kill Pascrell’s resolution and keep Trump’s tax returns secret. No Republicans voted to require Trump to hand over his tax returns. (Two Republicans, including Mark Sanford of South Carolina, voted “present.”)

185 Democrats voted in favor of Pascrell’s efforts.

Nearly 1.1 million people have signed a White House petition demanding the immediate release of Trump’s tax returns.

Trump promised to release his tax return if he ever ran for president.

“If I decide to run for office, I’ll produce my tax returns. Absolutely. I would love to do that,” Trump said in 2014.

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Reposted from Think Progress.

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

California Protects Precariat Workers

From the AFL-CIO

In a historic win for California’s workers, the California Legislature approved a bill Sept. 13 that makes the misclassification of employees as independent contractors more difficult.

Sponsored by the California Labor Federation, Assembly Bill 5 codifies and expands on a 2018 California Supreme Court decision.

The bill also will help curb the rampant exploitation of workers by unscrupulous employers and give California’s working people the basic rights and protections we all deserve. Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to sign the bill into law.

 “The time is up for unscrupulous employers who claim their workers are ‘independent’ in order to cut corners on costs,”  California Assembly member Lorena Gonzalez said about A.B. 5

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