Donald Trump’s undisclosed tax returns are one of the breakout issues of this year’s presidential election. Last week’s New York Times investigation uncovered that the Republican nominee might have not paid federal taxes for up to 18 years after losing nearly $1 billion in a single year. The revelation came on the heels of the first presidential debate, at which Trump quipped that paying nothing in federal income tax “makes me smart.” He also told his audience that rooting for the 2008 housing collapse was “good business” and that he likes to “take advantage of the laws of the nation” when it comes to running his multiple businesses.
“I’m working for you now—I’m not working for Trump,” Trump explained to supporters in Colorado this Monday. In business, he said, “It’s my job to minimize the overall tax burden” and that he has “legally used the tax laws to my benefit … Honestly, I have brilliantly used those laws.”
Lynn Forrester de Rothschild disagrees. She thinks being able to “beat the system” is not a presidential quality. “He’s a person who’s gamed the system his whole life for his own ends. Now he claims that means he can fix it, but he’s never shown any inclination to fix it for anyone but himself,” the chief executive of the holding company E.L. Rothschild tells Yahoo Finance. “It matters why you go into public office, particularly when you’re the highest official of the greatest country on Earth.”
Rothschild is a long-time friend and supporter of Hillary Clinton. She even stayed in the White House at Clinton’s bequest during her honeymoon with her husband Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, a member of the esteemed Rothschild banking family of London. “I personally believe Clinton is better because she’s lived her life trying to figure out how to make life better for people who are struggling, and she understands how the successful can help the struggling,” she explains.
Clinton has been criticized for hobnobbing with the elite and accepting large checks to speak at bank functions. This doesn’t bother Rothschild. She believes Clinton will work to bridge the class divide in the United States by motivating to legislative branch to work together towards change. “She’s shown it physically, when she went to the Senate she worked with Lindsay Graham and all of the Republican leadership to get good things done,” she says.
And if Trump wins, Rothschild fears widespread market and economic turbulence. “Uncertainty is always bad,” even in the short term.