Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand wants to take on President Trump in 2020 because she believes America deserves a president who “doesn’t put greed and self-interest over millions of lives.”
The junior senator from New York announced her run for president over the weekend in a speech in front of Trump Tower, where she claimed Americans need “a president who not only sets an example, but follows yours.”
Days later, Gillibrand released 12 years of tax returns that shows she not only pays a lot lower rate than most Americans, she reaped “significant savings” from Republican tax cuts implemented in 2017.
According to Bloomberg:
Gillibrand, who has said the tax law is an example of ‘Washington’s culture of soft-corruption at its worst,’ got a tax cut worth several thousand dollars, according to two accountants who reviewed the returns.
The exact comparison is difficult because Gillibrand reported more in income in 2017 than in 2018, but Gillibrand saw ‘significant savings’ from the tax bill, said Michael Knight, an accountant at Knight Rolleri Sheppard in Fairfield, Connecticut.
Gillibrand and her husband, Jonathan, reported $167,634 from her congressional salary and an additional $50,000 from her book deal, and paid $29,170 in federal taxes. Jonathan Gillibrand reported no income in 2018.
Accountants told the news site Gillibrand filed her 2017 tax returns using the alternative minimum tax, and filed her 2018 taxes using the regular system, which allows her to write off $10,000 of her $35,606 state and local tax bill. The new tax law also allowed her to take a new deduction for pass-through income from her book deal, the experts said.
“The benefit of the pass-through deduction and not getting swept into the alternative minimum tax outweighed the (state and local tax) cap” in the new tax laws, according to the news site.
In total, Gillibrand paid about $29,000 on $214,000 in adjusted gross income in 2018, which comes out to a lot lower rate than most Americans face.
According to Newsday, “Gillibrand had an effective tax rate of 13.6 percent and made $3,750 in charitable donations.”
Gillibrand’s decision to release her tax returns makes her the first Democrat running for president in 2020 to do so, though Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and others have vowed to follow suit in the future.
The move is an attempt to force President Trump to also release his tax returns, which he’s refused to do. It also comes as House Democrats work to force the Treasury Department to reveal Trump’s tax records, which Democrats are convinced will expose nefarious activities, Vox reports.
“The American people should know that their president is beholden to no one but them, and I’m urging all presidential candidates to join me and disclose at least 10 years of their taxes, which will strengthen our ability to beat President Trump,” Gillibrand said in a prepared statement.