- Associated Press - Thursday, January 19, 2017

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A lawmaker in Rhode Island wants to prevent presidential candidates from appearing on the state’s ballot unless they release their tax returns.

State Sen. Gayle Goldin, a Providence Democrat, says she’ll submit a bill this week to require presidential candidates to release five years of federal tax returns to qualify for the ballot.

Similar proposals are circulating in Massachusetts, California, New Mexico, Hawaii and the District of Columbia.

Lawmakers are responding to President-elect Donald Trump’s decision to not release his tax returns during the campaign. The Republican’s decision broke with decades of precedent.

Goldin says voters deserve transparency so they can evaluate a candidate’s integrity, potential conflicts of interests and respect for the nation’s laws.

The Board of Elections would make the tax returns public.

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