Republican nominee Donald Trump responded to a question about his unreleased tax returns by saying he’ll only release them when Hillary turns over 30,000 deleted emails to the public.
Early on in Monday night’s debate at Hofstra University, moderator Lester Holt brought up the matter of Trump’s tax returns, which unlike Clinton, he has declined to release.
Trump initially tried to sidestep the matter by saying he was under a routine audit from the IRS, and couldn’t release them until that audit was concluded. But Holt countered by citing the IRS itself, which has said an audit is no barrier to Trump releasing his returns. At that point Trump pivoted, and offered Clinton a quid pro quo on his taxes.
“I will release my tax returns against my lawyer’s wishes when she releases her 33,000 e-mails that have been deleted,” Trump said. “As soon as she releases them, I will release. I will release my tax returns and that’s against — my lawyers, they say, don’t do it.”
Trump added that his offer was “non-negotiable.”
Clinton gave no indication she would ever consider such a swap, instead arguing that Trump didn’t release them because he had something to hide.
“Maybe he’s not as rich as he says he is,” she said. “Maybe he’s not as charitable as he claims to be … [Maybe] he’s paid nothing in federal taxes.”
Notably, Trump suggested it wouldn’t be a big problem if he had avoided paying taxes, saying the government would just have “wasted” the money anyway.
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