Sen. Al Franken Repeats: 'We Need to See His Tax Returns'

By Susan Jones | March 6, 2017 | 5:52am EST
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has made repeated calls for President Donald Trump to release his tax returns, which Democrats view as potential political ammunition to use against Trump. No one knows what's in Trump's tax returns, since he has refused to release them. (AP File Photo)

( - "I think this is just a distraction," Sen. Al Franken told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday.

The Minnesota Democrat was talking about President Donald Trump's tweet on Saturday, in which Trump said he'd "Just found out that Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!"

Franken said he believes Trump made the stunning charge to "distract from this very, very serious interference by a foreign power on our democracy -- and the question of whether Trump world, his campaign, his business associates, had anything to do with it and colluding with them."

Franken, who is calling for an independent prosecutor, said the Russian attempt to meddle in the U.S. election was an attack on the United States.

"And the question is -- and it's beginning to look more and more like we -- we certainly have to investigate this -- that the Trump campaign was in league with them. And what the -- what do the Russians have on Donald Trump? Why won't he release his taxes?"

A short time later, Franken returned to the topic of Trump's tax returns:

And here's what I want to get to. His own son, Donald Trump's son, has said in 2008, that Russia did an inordinate amount of business with them. And we don't know what they have over him. We don't know what the Russians have on Donald Trump. And we need -- and we need to see, if anything -- we need to see his tax returns.

He said that he couldn't release his tax returns because he was under audit. First of all, you can release tax returns if you're under audit. But he won't even release a letter from the IRS saying you're under audit. That's easy to do.

This is not the first time Franken has called for Trump to release his tax returns. As has reported, Franken told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” last week that he wanted an independent investigation into Trump’s alleged ties with the Russians:

“I believe the president should turn over his tax returns,” Franken said in that March 2 interview. “His excuses for not turning over his tax returns during the campaign were completely bogus.”

Franken told ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday that said he probably wouldn’t know if a secret FISA court had approved a warrant to look at something on a Trump campaign computer server:

“But the president of the United States did not tap Donald Trump's phone. I mean, that's just ridiculous, and it's a distraction,” Franken insisted.

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