New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) said that he and the city will seek to collect President Donald Trump's unpaid taxes after an extensive New York Times report revealed that Trump's personal wealth is directly related to decades-long tax avoidance schemes.
On Tuesday, the mayor instructed state and local tax agencies "to immediately investigate tax and housing violations and to work with NY State to find out if appropriate taxes were paid."
I’ve directed NYC’s Department of Finance to immediately investigate tax and housing violations and to work with NY… https://t.co/8nFHzKyrLN— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@Mayor Bill de Blasio) 1538534505.0
DeBlasio continued his pledge on Wendesday.
“It’s clear to me that there are real ramifications right now to what has been disclosed, either potential violations of law, or in cases where the statute of limitations has ended that there may be very serious civil penalties that can be applied by both the state and the city,” de Blasio said. “The city of New York is looking to recoup any money that Donald Trump owes the people of New York City, period.”
Hizzonor laid blame to city and state tax collectors for failing to properly scrutinize the Trump's finances. De Blasio also said that if Trump's tax history were more thoroughly vetted, he would not have gotten elected.
“There was a good-old-boy network that obviously Donald Trump played like a fiddle and evaded the kind of regulation and investigation and prosecution he should have received many times over,” de Blasio said. “He finagled and paid his way to being able to escape the kind of scrutiny and prosecution he deserved. And honestly, if a lot of people in New York state had done their jobs he would never have been president of the United States.”
The taxes Trump and his family allegedly skirted their way out of paying “could be going to veterans, could be going to seniors, could be going to kids," the mayor added.
Though the statute of limitations has run out on any possible criminal proceedings, civil cases may be pursuable under state law if evidence is found supporting willful tax evasion.
New York City deserves justice.
@NYCMayor Get our tax dollars returned to NY. We work hard giving welfare to soybean farmers in the mid west. The m… https://t.co/W3keQueFMl— Cat Escalera (@Cat Escalera) 1538587753.0
@NYCMayor @NYCMayorsOffice Bring the criminal down. Make that unindicted co-conspirator pay.— Geoffrey Sorensen (@Geoffrey Sorensen) 1538534889.0
@NYCMayor Throw the book at em!— ThePhillyShell (@ThePhillyShell) 1538537194.0
@NYCMayor How glad I am that you are on the case.— Harry S. Truman is ready to impeach someone (@Harry S. Truman is ready to impeach someone) 1538535175.0
@NYCMayor Thank you!— Jennifer Piotti (@Jennifer Piotti) 1538537176.0
@NYCMayor Good work!— Gabriel Byatt (@Gabriel Byatt) 1538534557.0
@NYCMayor Thank you. I ♥️ NY!— Tracy Facey (@Tracy Facey) 1538541428.0
@NYCMayor Thank-you!— TraceyOlson (@TraceyOlson) 1538538017.0
@NYCMayor THANK YOU!— Monique McClain (@Monique McClain) 1538537518.0
@NYCMayor @stevgole Thank you! We need to know Trump will be investigated!— Pamela Dubsky #BoycottNRA (@Pamela Dubsky #BoycottNRA) 1538582133.0
@NYCMayor Thank You— 𝑳𝑖𝒔𝒂'𝒔 ᴾºⁱⁿᵀ o𝑓 𝑣𝑖𝒆𝒘 📷 (@𝑳𝑖𝒔𝒂'𝒔 ᴾºⁱⁿᵀ o𝑓 𝑣𝑖𝒆𝒘 📷) 1538535373.0
@NYCMayor @PattyArquette Take him down— Brienne of Snark 🏳️🌈🦃 (@Brienne of Snark 🏳️🌈🦃) 1538592448.0
Some people, however, are wondering why it has taken so long for Trump and his ilk to get caught.
@NYCMayor I can’t get over how not only DJT got away with this for so long , but his entire family got away with it… https://t.co/jN0U0N1r4K— becky lou (@becky lou) 1538587515.0
@NYCMayor What took you so long— Remiperry (@Remiperry) 1538573124.0
@NYCMayor Oh please. NY knew this was happening when it did but his dad was a major political donor. I hope you d… https://t.co/4ac2Q7HYJM— Jay Gorman (@Jay Gorman) 1538535132.0
@NYCMayor @realHeatherD What I want to know is why wasn't this investigated years ago— Traci (@Traci) 1538589793.0
@NYCMayor Why did it take 20+ years to now uncover all of this? You mean to tell me that nobody knew about this until yesterday? Come on.— Craig Heicklen (@Craig Heicklen) 1538582125.0
Shortly after the Times story broke on Tuesday, The Washington Post reported that New York's state tax agency is considering opening an investigation into Trump's alleged tax evasion, which the Times described as "outright fraud."
“The Tax Department is reviewing the allegations in the [Times] article and is vigorously pursuing all appropriate avenues of investigation,” said James Gazzale, a spokesman for the New York Department of Taxation and Finance.
On Tuesday, the New York Times published a 13,000 work investigative report (their longest ever) about how Fred Trump, the president’s father, funneled more than a billion dollars to his children through financial gifts and schemes, avoiding at least $550 million in taxes.
“President Trump participated in dubious tax schemes during the 1990s, including instances of outright fraud, that greatly increased the fortune he received from his parents, an investigation by The New York Times has found,” writes David Barstow, Susanne Craig, and Ross Buettner.
Trump touted himself as a self-made billionaire on the campaign trail who received a “small $1 million loan” from his father, but interviews as well as analyses of thousands of tax documents and financial records, “reveals that Mr. Trump received the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s real estate empire, starting when he was a toddler and continuing to this day.”