WASHINGTON ― If there’s anyone who can get Donald Trump to release his tax returns, it’s Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).
Four years ago Wednesday, Mitt Romney finally released his tax returns ― after a significant amount of trolling from Reid. The senator told The Huffington Post in 2012 that he had a well-connected source who told him the GOP presidential nominee hadn’t paid any taxes for 10 years.
Earlier this year, Trump made fun of Romney for his reluctance previously to be fully transparent.
But Trump has made Romney look like a well-washed window. So far, he hasn’t released anything, using the bogus excuse that he can’t show his tax returns because he’s being audited. Reid took to the Senate floor Wednesday and trolled Trump, speculating that he’s hiding evidence that he’s not as rich as he claims to be, avoids paying his fair share of taxes and uses taxpayer money to enrich himself.
And while Reid said there’s one thing he and Romney have in common ― both want Trump to release tax returns ― there’s also something Romney and Trump have in common: They’ve both been relentlessly trolled by Reid.
Reid has been picking up his needling of Trump in recent days. Last week, he chided the GOP presidential nominee for questioning whether Hillary Clinton is healthy enough to be president, telling reporters, “Take a look at this character that’s running for president. He complains about her health? What does he do? He’s 70 years old, he’s not slim and trim, he brags about eating fast food every day.”
The insults clearly started to get under Trump’s skin, since he responded in a Washington Post interview by mocking Reid for a serious eye injury he suffered while working out with exercise bands more than a year ago.
The following day, Reid hit back.
“Donald Trump can make fun of the injury that crushed the side of my face and took the sight in my right eye all he wants ― I’ve dealt with tougher opponents than him,” Reid said in a statement. “I may not be able to see out of my right eye, but with my good eye, I can see that Trump is a man who inherited his money and spent his entire life pretending like he earned it.”
On the floor that day, Reid called the real estate mogul a “human leech who will bleed the country,” a “con artist” and a “spoiled brat.”
Reid’s criticisms have generally focused on the core of Trump’s appeal ― that he’s a wealthy, successful businessman who can use those skills to turn the country around. Going after the GOP presidential nominee as a fraud, scammer and con-artist all serve to undercut that pitch.
The Clinton campaign echoed this theme in the following days ― with a spokesperson calling him “a fraud who believes the rules don’t apply to him” ― and the Democratic National Committee has blasted out pick-up of Reid’s comments to reporters.
Donald Trump Jr. recently gave a different, and seemingly more honest, answer on why his father won’t release his tax returns, admitting that it would result in too many people “asking questions.”
Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.
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