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Clinton's tax disclosures put the spotlight on Trump

Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, released her latest tax returns yesterday, ratcheting up pressure on her rival Donald Trump to make his own forms public.

Published: 13th August 2016 07:32 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th August 2016 07:32 AM   |  A+A-

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Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (L) and her Republican counterpart Donald Trump (R). (File Photo | AP)

WASHINGTON: Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, released her latest tax returns yesterday, ratcheting up pressure on her rival Donald Trump to make his own forms public. According to her 2015 return Mrs Clinton, together with her husband Bill Clinton, earned $10.6?million (pounds 8?million) and paid a federal tax rate of 34.2 percent.

Most of their income, around $6 million, came from paid speeches and they gave more than $1 million to charity.

The return showed the couple's income had fallen dramatically from $28?million in 2014 as Mrs Clinton spent more time on the campaign trail.

It also confirmed that Mrs Clinton's tax affairs satisfied the terms of the so-called "Buffett Rule", which she wants to introduce if elected to the White House. That rule would mean anyone earning more than $1?million would have to pay a tax rate above 30 per cent. The Clintons have previously released annual tax returns dating back to 1977.

Mr Trump has declined to make his tax returns public, saying he is under a routine audit by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). His refusal to do so has led to questions over what rate of tax he pays, his actual wealth, how much he gives to charity, and his business dealings with foreign countries. Every Republican and Democratic presidential nominee since the Seventies has released their returns for public inspection. The IRS has said Mr Trump can release his tax returns while under

audit.

Mr Trump's reluctance is set to be a major point of attack for Mrs Clinton during the three forthcoming presidential debates. Jennifer Palmieri, a spokesman for Mrs Clinton, said: "Donald Trump is hiding behind fake excuses and backtracking on previous promises to release his tax returns. What is he trying to hide?" Michael Cohen, Mr Trump's special counsel, has said he will not allow him to release his returns until the audits are complete.

Mrs Clinton made her move on the same day the Republican Party held what was described as an "emergency meeting' with the Trump campaign in Florida. Dozens of Republican operatives gathered signatures for a letter urging Reince Priebus, the party chairman, to stop helping Mr Trump and divert resources away from the presidential nominee to Senate races. Mr Trump sought to end a row over his comments suggesting Barack Obama was the "founder" of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and that Mrs Clinton was the terror group's "most valuable player". The property mogul said his remarks had been meant as "sarcasm".

In a speech to evangelical pastors Mr Trump appeared to admit his campaign was struggling, saying: "We're having a problem." He said there was a "tremendous problem in Utah," a formerly Republican state which polls suggested he could now lose.



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