Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton released seven years worth of her personal tax returns on Friday. The documents show that Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, have paid $43.8 million in federal taxes since 2007, with an effective tax rate of 35.7 percent in 2014. The Clintons made more than $30 million in paid speeches in 2014 and gave about $15 million to charities in the seven years the releases cover, representing a little more than 11 percent of their income.
New about the returns emerged in parallel with the campaign releasing a doctor-signed bill of health that says she's in "excellent" health and physically fit enough to be president. All of the Clintons' returns dating back to 1977 are now available to the public, meaning that she has released more returns than any other candidate vying for the presidency. She used the opportunity to repeat her campaign message that Americans are having a hard time because the economy is "stacked at the top" and called for tax reforms.
The current tax code is "full of loopholes that allow the wealthiest Americans and most powerful corporations to game the system and avoid paying their fair share," Clinton said in a release accompanying the documents. "It even permits a highly paid Wall Street trader to sometimes pay a lower tax rate than a teacher or a nurse. And it creates perverse incentives that discourage long-term investments that would grow our economy and raise incomes for hard-working Americans."
In releasing these documents, Clinton also hopes to combat the image that she is dishonest and not transparent. Also on Friday, the State Department released another batch of emails from her time as secretary of state. It was revealed earlier this year that she set up a private email server during her time in office, a move that ran contrary to Obama administration policies. The email server was eyed suspiciously as a tactic for keeping public records of interest out of the hands of the State Department.
Others are concerned that the emails could have contained sensitive government information that should have been protected on State Department servers, which she denies. She later turned the emails over to the State Department and has called for their release.
A Quinnipiac poll released Thursday showed that voters eye her with suspicion. Among independents who were asked whether they see her as "honest" and "trustworthy," just 31 percent said yes, while 63 percent said she is not. Democrats were more positive in their assessment, with 76 percent responding yes. Republicans replied with an overwhelming 92 percent that she is not trustworthy and honest.