Barrett Bill Requires Tax Returns for Pres. Candidates

At a recent public hearing at the State House, local State Senator Mike Barrett urged support for his bill to require presidential candidates to release their tax returns in order to appear on the Massachusetts primary or general election ballot.

“Until recently, Americans just assumed that the stature of the Office of President ensured the observance of certain principles of transparency and integrity,” Barrett said, at a hearing of the Committee on Election Laws.  “While unwritten, the ideas seemed well-established.  One such idea is the disclosure by presidential candidates of recent tax returns in order to reassure the public about possible conflicts of interest.”

In front of the packed crowd, Barrett added that “There is continuing and intense support for a bill requires anyone running for president to disclose his or her tax returns.  The voters have a right to know.”

This session Barrett’s bill is co-sponsored by 32 members of the Senate and House of Representatives.

Recently, California’s Legislature and Governor have put on the books a law similar to Barrett’s disclosure proposal for presidential candidates running in Massachusetts.  Barrett says that “Now it’s high time for us to act.”