Representative Reichert’s letter-to-the-editor defending his votes to hide Trump’s taxes, proves he is a skilled politician who can make wrong sound right.
Here are his tricks:
False-equivalency – Reichert says some constituents want Trump’s taxes investigated, others disagree. Almost everyone wants Trump’s taxes investigated.
Good intentions: He wants you to think he agrees Trump’s taxes should be seen. Stating this is an impotent gesture. Actions count; intentions don’t. He voted to hide them.
Half-truth: “campaign traditions don’t supersede…” the law’s protections of tax privacy. True, but the 1924 law, 6103, clearly states Reichert’s committee can request the tax returns of the Executive branch.
Falsehood: Looking at Trump’s taxes would threaten the privacy of Americans. No, it would not set a precedent for average citizens. The law applies to investigating the Executive, not private citizens.
Alternative fact: Reichert states, “The Ways and Means Committee has never been in the business of targeting the tax returns of single individuals.” Wrong. In 1974, they “targeted” Nixon*, finding he owed $500,000. The precedent is set, and hasn’t hurt average citizens.
To lie, you must know the truth. Reichert is just parroting party colleagues without questioning them. We expect more.
*The 1974 Joint Committee on Internal Revenue Taxation investigation into Nixon’s taxes was conducted at his request, and resulted in his owing the government $476,431.