Majority of Voters Say Trump Hasn't Paid 'Fair Share' of Federal Income Taxes as Biden Leads by 12 Points

A majority of voters do not believe President Donald Trump has paid his "fair share" of federal income taxes as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden continues to lead by double digits.

The new polling released Sunday by ABC News and The Washington Post shows 57 percent of likely voters believe—and 51 percent strongly believe—that Trump has not paid his fair share in federal income taxes

Notably, there is a strong partisan divide, with 93 percent of Democrats saying Trump hasn't paid enough in federal income taxes while just 16 percent of Republicans say the same. A majority of independents (57 percent) think the president has underpaid in federal income taxes.

Joe Biden and Donald Trump
This combination of pictures created on September 29 shows Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and President Donald Trump speaking during the first presidential debate in Cleveland on September 29. JIM WATSON,SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty

Trump has fought hard to keep his tax records secret, repeatedly claiming falsely that he cannot release them due to an ongoing audit by the Internal Revenue Service. But at the end of September, The New York Times published a lengthy report analyzing nearly two decades of the president's personal tax returns that it had obtained. They showed that Trump—a billionaire—paid just $750 in federal income taxes in both 2016 and 2017.

The tax returns also showed that Trump had paid $0 in federal income taxes in 10 of the previous 15 years, while also reporting millions in annual losses. Financial analysts have said the returns show Trump is in a somewhat dire financial position and counter his claims of being a savvy businessman. They also raise questions of potential tax fraud due to some of the write-offs and accounting "magic" employed to reduce his annual payments.

Meanwhile, Biden continues to hold a double-digit lead over Trump. The same poll release today shows Biden is backed by 54 percent of likely voters while just 42 percent support the president. That aligns with other recent polls, many of which have shown Biden ahead by double digits, ranging from 10 to 16 percentage points.

The new survey data also shows a significant majority of likely voters disapprove of the president overall. Only 45 percent of likely voters say they approve of Trump while 55 percent say they disapprove, and 50 percent say they disapprove "strongly."

The current polling averages compiled by Real Clear Politics and FiveThirtyEight show Biden ahead by 9.8 percentage points and 10.3 percentage points, respectively. In state-level contests—which will inevitably decide the outcome of the presidential election—Biden is ahead in all the key battleground states. But those margins are smaller than the Democratic nominee's national lead.

Democrats are particularly focused on Florida, Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania—four states that went blue for former President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012 before flipping red for Trump in 2016. The current averages by Real Clear Politics show Biden favored in all four, with a lead of about 3.7 percentage points in Florida, 7.1 points in Pennsylvania, 6.7 points in Michigan and 5.5 points in Wisconsin.