Rep. Evans: All Public Office Holders Should Release Their Tax Returns

Originally published by on February 13, 2019

( — On Tuesday, Feb. 12, when asked whether House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) should be legally required to release her tax returns, Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Penn.) said anyone “in public office” should make their records “available to the public.” asked Evans, “Under H.R. 1, both the president and the vice president would be required to release their tax returns, by law. Do you think that the sitting Speaker of the House should also be legally required to release his or her tax returns?”

“I think any of us who are in public office should be transparent with the public, and that we should be – make our, our records available to the public,” said Evans, who represents part of Philadelphia. “I think we should make this public information.”

H.R. 1, known as the “For the People Act of 2019,” was introduced on Jan. 3, the first day of the 116th Congress, by Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.). It aims to “expand Americans’ access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, and strengthen ethics rules for public servants.”

The act, which is supported by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), would require presidents and vice presidents, but not members of Congress, such as Pelosi, to release their tax returns.

Section 10010 of the act, entitled Presidential and Vice Presidential Tax Transparency, states that the sitting president and vice president must submit copies of their income tax returns “for the taxable year and for the 9 preceding taxable years” to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), and the FEC must make the returns “publicly available.”

In addition, the act would require presidential and vice presidential candidates from a “major party” to submit copies of their income tax returns for the “10 most recent taxable years.”

Explaining why President Trump must release his tax returns, Speaker Pelosi said last week, “I think overwhelmingly the public wants to see the president’s tax returns, and so they want to know the truth. They want to know the facts, and he has nothing to hide.”

“I’ll just tell you this and go on from there,” she said. “We have important work to do, and we have important judgments to make, and we need information to make those judgments.”