- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Donald Trump’s presidential campaign manager said Tuesday that Mr. Trump is indeed worth $10 billion and that there’s no concern a more detailed look at the presumptive GOP presidential nominee’s finances would reveal the candidate isn’t bringing in as much as money as he says he is.

“Your tax returns on a yearly basis don’t tell you what you’re worth,” Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said on “CBS This Morning.” “What they show is what your income is.”

“And Mr. Trump has already showed what his income is: $557 million last year, he has a massive cash flow, he has very, very little debt, less than two or three percent of his overall net worth,” he said. “He’s worth $10 billion.”

The $557 million figure comes from Mr. Trump’s recently-filed personal financial disclosure form, and the campaign has said his net worth is “in excess” of $10 billion.

But other recent independent estimates have put it at less than that. Forbes Magazine estimated last September that it was $4.5 billion.

“I’m running for president,” Mr. Trump said in the magazine’s write-up of his financials. “I’m worth much more than you have me down [for]. I don’t look good, to be honest. I mean, I look better if I’m worth $10 billion than if I’m worth $4 billion.”

Asked if there’s a concern that Mr. Trump’s tax returns will show his income is smaller than what he has said publicly, Mr. Lewandowski said: “Absolutely not.”

Mr. Lewandowski also said the financial disclosure form doesn’t provide a comprehensive look, saying, for example, that the option for assessing Trump Tower’s value is simply “more than $50 million,” and a building across the street sold for $1.8 billion.

He also reiterated that the billionaire businessman would release his tax returns once an IRS audit is finished.

“As soon as that audit is done, he’ll release his taxes,” he said.

On NBC’s “Meet the Press” this week, likely Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton called on Mr. Trump to release his tax returns and “prove that he actually has the level of success he claims to have.”

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the 2012 GOP presidential nominee, has suggested that one reason Mr. Trump isn’t releasing his tax returns is because he might not be as wealthy as he says he is. Mr. Romney, who bowed to pressure himself in 2012 to release some of his financial figures, has also called on Mr. Trump to release his returns.

“Mitt Romney’s taxes were not under audit at the time,” Mr. Lewandowski said. “The difference is Mr. Trump is proud to pay a lower tax rate — the lowest tax rate possible.”

Mr. Lewandowski also dismissed Mr. Romney as a “failed presidential candidate on two different occasions,” saying he “hid from his wealth” and that Mr. Trump owns a store on Fifth Avenue worth more than Mr. Romney’s total net worth.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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