If you had any doubt that Donald J. Trump plays by his own rules, this will convince you that he's totally doing things his, and his only, way.
Katy Tur, the reporter covering The Donald for NBC News, confirmed Wednesday, May 18, that Trump will ask all potential vice presidential picks to release, at least to the campaign, their tax returns.
It's part of the presumptive GOP candidate's "political, financial and strategic vetting," said Tur, despite Trump's own, so far, lack of personal tax transparency.
Taking the "normal" veep vetting steps: The campaign also told Tur that the review of a possible veep's 1040s is "normal."
So are "Make America Great Again" staffers saying that Trump, who has not released his tax returns, is not normal? (Sorry. Too easy to let pass.)
Oops! Abby Normal's brain is put into Young Frankenstein's monster.
No audit secrecy rule on candidate's side: While many tax advisers agree with Trump's decision not to publicize his returns while he's under Internal Revenue Service examination, there is no legal requirement preventing such a revelation by the taxpayer.
And given that taxpayer Trump is seeking the United States' highest political office, other tax pros say he should let the electorate see at least some of his filings regardless of audit status.
They note that former President Richard Nixon, under audit while also in the midst of the investigation into the Watergate break-in and subsequent cover-up, made his taxes public.
The IRS' initial query was about a large charitable deduction claimed by the embattled Oval Office occupant.
"People have got to know whether or not their President is a crook," Nixon told reporters in November 1973 in connection with the tax inquiry. "Well, I am not a crook."
Until Trump opens up his taxes and proves that there is no bombshell in his 1040s, many folks will question whether The Donald can make the same tax claim as did Tricky Dick.
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