Despite her assertion that there's a 1st Amendment protection given the media to publish the tax returns of someone they deem worthy of scrutiny, Rachel Maddox is woefully ignorant. Just because she plays a journalist on television doesn't make her one.
Meanwhile, the law is clear.
26 U.S. Code § 6103 - Confidentiality and disclosure of returns and return information(a) General rule Returns and return information shall be confidential, and except as authorized by this title —(1) no officer or employee of the United States,(2) no officer or employee of any State, any local law enforcement agency receiving information under subsection (i)(1)(C) or (7)(A), any local child support enforcement agency, or any local agency administering a program listed in subsection (l)(7)(D) who has or had access to returns or return information under this section or section 6104(c), and(3) no other person (or officer or employee thereof) who has or had access to returns or return information under subsection (e)(1)(D)(iii), subsection (k)(10), paragraph (6), (10), (12), (16), (19), (20), or (21) of subsection (l), paragraph (2) or (4)(B) of subsection (m), or subsection (n), shall disclose any return or return information obtained by him in any manner in connection with his service as such an officer or an employee or otherwise or under the provisions of this section. For purposes of this subsection, the term "officer or employee" includes a former officer or employee.
No respectable editor would ever allow the tax returns of an individual be published without their written consent. It wouldn't matter if someone left it in a mailbox or in a public bathroom, the law is clear NO one (outside of pertinent IRS personnel) is allowed to view or share the confidential tax returns of anyone else.
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