Transcript for Democratic candidates begin to release tax returns
Opt for more on what this all means why we should care about candidates' tax returns or want to bring ended. To the conversation to some very Smart people on this Arab Reiner from the Center for Responsive Politics joins us live from Chicago she's part of a watchdog group which analyzes. Money in politics also bring in our political director Rick Klein joins us as well Sarah want to start with you. There's no law requiring. Ted tax returns to be released Donald Trump says people really don't care about his bat. Ewing organizations say this is so important why do we need to see these things. I think it it's really important and in Natalie expressed no. Who is representing us and a person's financial background can bring. To that person conflicts of interest. And it also had a kind. Represented. Especially in half and inning as though they are one. Cent of their financial records show them to be someone. So we really support the idea of making sure that the American people can see I'm the financial backgrounds are amber congress and president. Amber climb despite all these calls from Democrats I was sort of surprised as we did an accounting today that. So few of the 20/20 candidates have actually released they're they're tax returns yet including Bernie Sanders or what do you make of that. Maybe they're procrastinators DeVon is not able to do you get ice. They're all into my mind as a functional political matter you can't run as a democratic candidate for president and not release your taxes and in a weird way. President Charles refusal to do so has made it absolutely imperative. Bernie Sanders really got away with this last cycle he will not happen again he is being forced almost shamed into doing it. Because the other candidates are doing and is now viewed as just the basic threshold of accountability keep in mind. This Democrats on capitol not just that are asking for Donald Trump's taxes. In an actively right now but also make the trip in trying to make it a requirement the future presidential candidates release their taxes before standing for office so I do think it's a new threshold question. And if you're not gonna release your taxes is just hard for me to imagine withstanding the the barrage of attacks that'll happen on a primary stage about you being just the restaurant. And sir if you're the average voter. Following this you think well. Surprise surprise a lot of these candidates Donald Trump included are simply rich people they write books to make a lot of money. But as a as a watchdog what do you look for in the returns and when trying to assess what might be of interest in there and what should the average person before when they. It read news reports see the actual returns as they come out what are what are we looking for. I think some of them arrested for interesting information in the it's it's sort of Powell. And these people hold onto well. So what they own it. The tax returns for by a much more fight and changed numbers that kind of information and other financial disclosures that politicians have to file CNET extensive. What they're selling what they're buying how much companies are bringing and I'm and not really fundamentally speaks to what. That politician has to gain or lose certain cannot ask particularly as seasoned people who're rating by nature regulations. And get of people who were passing legislation. On tax and and so understanding how they might personally benefit from a or suffer from ballast policy I think it's the thing it. American people deserve to know and and should care out. Emmerich real quick before lets you go Hollinger a factor what is this to voters out there in the primary states do you think. I don't think it's something you're gonna tell a pollster is critical I think. Candidates are worried about looking like they're hypocritical either because they make as much as is money as a as a millionaire Mike that there part of that top 1% as Elizabeth Warren's taxes showed his Bernie Sanders are likely to show. Or because it shows the U having given up money to charity and you don't. You don't speak your values through that way I think it is though is accountability issue a critical one for Democrats these days and when you look at that the litany of things that they that Democrats you Donald Trump hasn't gotten wrong. Abandoning this tradition over the last four decades of allowing full public scrutiny of taxes is something that's out the Democrats do talk about and again I just. I think that that's the that's the context here it's not going to be that sell and sell made a few dollars more or less than somebody else. It's that they are able to show the American people this is my it's these are my sources of income and I have nothing to hide. Our political director Rick Klein have to get your taxes done buddy think he's so I called Sarah Bryant a parakeet. Sarah writer from the senator or described responsive politics join us from Chicago I think he's so much Sarah.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.