NEW YORK — Hillary Clinton’s campaign is putting money behind their new chosen attack on Donald Trump.
Clinton’s campaign will begin airing a new ad — titled “Absolutely” — on Thursday that hits Trump for not releasing his tax returns despite saying in 2014 that he “absolutely” would in a interview with an Irish television station.
Clinton and her top aides have tried to weaponize Trump’s lack of disclosure on taxes, repeatedly slamming the Republican nominee and speculating why he is declining to do what decades of presidential nominees have done.
“Under his plans, Donald Trump would pay lower tax rate than middle class families,” Clinton said Wednesday in Cleveland. “Of course, we have no idea what tax rate he pays because unlike everybody else who has run for president he refuses to release his tax returns so American people can’t really judge.”
Clinton’s use of Trump’s tax returns are an effort to raise credibility and honesty questions around the Republican nominee, an effort that Clinton’s top aides hope will leave voters questioning whether Trump either has ties to questionable businesses or isn’t as wealthy as he says he is.
Clinton has even started to say at events: “If you believe that Trump is as wealthy as he claims.”
“He wants America to work for him and his friends, at the expense of everyone else,” Clinton said earlier this month in Michigan, before noting that it is impossible to know how “nice” his tax plan will be to the Trump family “because he refuses to do what every other presidential candidate in decades has done and release his tax returns.”
The new ad — which will air as part of the national cable ad buy — features Republican commentator George Will and 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney, who both oppose Trump, positing why he isn’t releasing his tax returns.
Will says it is “perhaps one more reason why we’re not seeing his tax returns is because he is deeply involved in dealing with Russian oligarchs.”
Romney says: “Either he’s not anywhere near as wealthy as he says he is (or) there’s a bombshell in Donald Trump’s taxes.”
Clinton released her 2015 tax returns earlier this month and eight years of personal income tax returns in 2015. With that release, Clinton’s aides said 38 years of Clinton tax returns have been available to the press over the course of her career, dating back to 1977.