Trump's tax returns may be shielded during 2020 election — will voters care?

56 percent of Americans believe Trump has a responsibility to publicly release his tax returns

President Trump's tax returns may remain shielded from the public until after the November election following a split ruling Thursday by the Supreme Court on demands for his financial records.

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In a pair of 7-2 decisions, the court ruled that Trump is not immune to a subpoena from the Manhattan district attorney over his financial and tax records. At the same time, the court kept a hold on the tax records that congressional investigators have been seeking. Trump is the only president in modern times who has not made his tax returns public.

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“This is all a political prosecution. I won the Mueller Witch Hunt, and others, and now I have to keep fighting in a politically corrupt New York. Not fair to this Presidency or Administration!” Trump tweeted.

For now, the landmark rulings have increased the likelihood that Trump makes it to the election without divulging his tax returns, banking and other financial documents to the public — which may ultimately hurt his chances of winning re-election.

That's according to a poll released last week by Pew Research Center, which found that 56 percent of Americans believe Trump has a responsibility to publicly release his tax returns. Forty-two percent said they believe he does not have a responsibility to do so.

Still, there's a gap between political parties: Just 20 percent of Republicans believe he has a responsibility to publicly release his taxes. Among Democrats, that percentage is 87 percent, according to the poll, which surveyed 4,708 individuals between June 16 and June 22. The poll had a margin of error of 1.8 percentage points.

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A similar poll by Economist/YouGov published on Thursday found that by a margin of five to three, the public wants to see the tax returns. However, the percentage of Republicans that want to see the financial records has dropped substantially. In 2016, before the election, 48 percent of Republicans said they want to see the returns; just 16 percent of Republican respondents on Thursday said he should release the returns.

Among overall registered voters, 57 percent said they still want to see the documents, however, that's down from 69 percent four years ago. Eighty-four percent of Democrats and 53 percent of independents said Trump should release the returns.

"The president’s supporters, for the most part, don’t think it is necessary for him to release his returns, though 13 percent of Trump voters now (and 16 percent of Republicans) would like to have them made public," the poll found.

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The poll surveyed 1,500 adults between July 5 and July 7 and has a margin of error of 3.2 percentage points.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, was quick to reignite his criticism of Trump for fighting to keep his tax returns, banking and other financial documents private.

"You want to talk about corruption? I’ve released 21 years of my tax returns — I entered as one of the poorest men in Congress, left one of the poorest men in government in Congress and as vice president," Biden said in a video from October that he tweeted again on Thursday.

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