During the run-up to the 2016 Presidential election, Donald Trump was extraordinarily coy about releasing his tax returns.
Nearly 400,000 Americans are demanding that president Donald Trump release his tax returns.
The White House petition system is anything but binding, but it has reached the designated 100,000 threshold to warrant an official response from the powers that be.
As of press time, the petition was sitting at 385,845 signatures, with more likely to be added by the due date of until February 19th, easily surpassing the 367,180 signatures that were added to the current record-holding petition to "legally recognize the Westboro Baptist Church as a hate group." Oof.
Mr Trump went against decades of precedent during his election campaign by refusing to release his tax returns.
On Sunday, Mr Trump's strategist Kellyanne Conway confirmed he has no intention of releasing his tax returns, claiming "people didn't care".
Consequently, Trump will be the first President in almost four decades to shield his tax returns from the public. On Monday, she pulled back a tad, tweeting that "POTUS is under audit and will not release until that is completed".
In amidst of a tumultuous first week in the west wing, it appears Trump is adopting a management style that suited him in business and helped him win the White House, and trying to apply it to Washington's unwieldy bureaucracy.
Releasing the returns would provide important insight into Mr. Trump's finances and businesses. He claimed it was because he was going through an IRS audit and assured us, the American public, that he would release them as soon as the audit was over. The documents would also identify the sources of his income and debt, helping to answer questions about his links to businessmen, banks and governments in places like Russian Federation and the Middle East, and putting a spotlight on potential conflicts of interest. "People didn't care. They voted for him".It is not clear what exactly will happen.During the campaign trail past year, Trump had promised to release his records once his audit by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service was over.
Presidential candidates have voluntarily disclosed their tax returns since the Watergate scandal ushered in an era of greater transparency.
President Trump said, "Put me into the board room as your representative and I will deliver for you like no politician has ever delivered, believe me".