Americans say, 56% to 27%, that Trump should release his tax returns to the public. Among those who want to see the president’s taxes, a majority say it’s very important that he make them available. Other recent surveys have found similarly robust support.
Trump’s continuing refusal to release his returns is a break in precedent from most presidents since Richard Nixon.
“The public has no right to see those,” Hogan Gidley, the White House principal deputy press secretary, told Fox News on Monday. “Congress definitely doesn’t have a right to see the tax returns of a private citizen, but also just think about the precedent that sets. Listen, this was already litigated. ... It’s never going to work.”
The Democratic chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee formally asked the Internal Revenue Service last week to hand over copies of Trump’s personal and business tax returns from the last six years.
There’s no clear public consensus on what Trump’s returns might actually show: 30% believe they would reveal information about his finances so serious it would prove he is unfit to be president, 22% that they would reveal information that’s less serious but still politically harmful and 27% think they would show nothing untoward at all. The rest aren’t sure.
Unsurprisingly, Trump’s opponents are the most convinced that the president has something to hide. Eighty-four percent of voters who backed Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in the last election suspect Trump’s taxes harbor damaging or disqualifying information, while about a quarter of Trump voters say the same. Most Clinton voters also think Trump isn’t as rich as he says that he is.
Americans’ desire for transparency isn’t limited to Trump: Those polled also say, 58% to 23%, that they’d like to see Democratic candidates for president release their tax returns.
But, perhaps largely due to Trump’s high-profile stance, the issue of access to candidates’ tax returns is deeply polarized.
An overwhelming majority of Clinton voters say they want to see tax returns both from Trump and from his prospective Democratic rivals. By contrast, just 28% of Trump voters think the president should release his taxes and just 38% want to see his Democratic opponents do so.
Clinton voters say, 78% to 12%, that tax returns provide legitimate information that helps voters make better decisions about who should be president; Trump voters say, 71% to 21%, that tax returns are largely irrelevant to the presidential race.
Use the widget below to further explore the results of the HuffPost/YouGov survey, using the menu at the top to select survey questions and the buttons at the bottom to filter the data by subgroups:
The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted April 3-5 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov’s opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.
HuffPost has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov’s nationally representative opinion polling. More details on the polls’ methodology are available here.
Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some but not all potential survey errors. YouGov’s reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.