Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? Start your Independent Premium subscription today.

Donald Trump continues to trail Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in national and state polls as the pair prepare to face-off in tonight’s first televised debate of the campaign.

Mr Trump, who was nine and 10 points behind his opponent in two Pennsylvania state polls published overnight meanwhile went on the defence over reports he planned to make his daughter Ivanka Trump his running mate in 2016.

Following bombshell reports on Sunday that the president avoided paying income tax for 10 years prior to taking office, Democrats – including House speaker Nancy Pelosi – have accused the president of being a national security risk because of his foreign loans.

For his part, the president declined the chance to defend himself in the Rose Garden yesterday when he convened the press corps to discuss the coronavirus (205,000 American deaths and counting – that’s 20 per cent of the global total from four per cent of its population).

‘Even as Trump took advantage of tax laws that benefit the wealthy, quite possibly in illegal ways, he worked with Republicans to make those laws in many ways even more beneficial to the super-rich,’ says Democratic lawmaker

The president’s stranged ex-lawyer told Joy Reid on MSNBC last night that his blustering former employer’s house of cards is about to come tumbling down.

Are Trump’s die-hard supporters, who weren’t offended by “grab ’em by the p****” or his dismissal of military servicemen and women as “suckers”, really likely to be shocked and disuaded from voting for him by a complex financial investigation?

The newspaper found that the president had paid just $750 in income tax in 2016 and 2017 and none at all in 10 of the preceding 15 years and that, although he had paid out $95m in tax over 18 years after raking in cash on The Apprentice, he subsequently got a federal refund of $72.9m and state and locals refunds of $21.2m to claw almost all of it back.

The probe also found that Trump is personally carrying a staggering amount of debt – including more than $300m in loans that will come due in the next four years.

Speaking to Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC last night, House speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested his mounting financial obligations leave him vulnerable to blackmail.

“This president appears to have over $400 million in debt. To whom? Different countries? What is the leverage they have? So for me, this is a national security question,” she said.

“We take an oath to protect and defend. This president is commander-in-chief. He has exposure to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, to whom? The public has a right to know,” Pelosi continued.

“Americans should be concerned about the president’s debt because it’s a national security risk for our country,” agreed Donald Sherman, deputy director of the nonprofit government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

“This is information that the president has aggressively and repeatedly tried to keep away from the public.”

While you would expect Trump’s political enemies to make hay with the report, a concern that’s less easy for the president and his apologists to shrug off is that raised by his own ex-national security adviser HR McMaster, on which Madeline Roth has more.

Yesterday, Bloomberg News reported that a new book by ex-Trump aide Rick Gates reveals the president planned to install his beloved daughter Ivanka as his running mate in 2016 ahead of Mike Pence.

The president angrily refuted the story on Twitter last night, just as he had The New York Times’s tax detailed investigation 24 hours earlier.

Donald Trump continues to trail Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in national and state polls as the pair prepare to face-off in tonight’s first televised debate of the campaign.

The president was nine and 10 points behind his opponent in two Pennsylvania state polls published overnight, one from NYT/Siena College and the other from Washington Post/ABC.

The first has Biden up 49 per cent to 40 per cent while the latter has him on 54 per cent to 44 per cent ahead of Trump.

The president had hoped for a boost in response to his rush to install conservative circuit court judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Supreme Court as successor to the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg but such a bump has so far failed to materialise.

New poll finds 53 per cent of Pennsylvania’s registered voters disapprove of Trump’s handling of coronavirus

Independent Premium Comments can be posted by members of our membership scheme, Independent Premium. It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. The most insightful comments on all subjects will be published daily in dedicated articles. You can also choose to be emailed when someone replies to your comment.

The existing Open Comments threads will continue to exist for those who do not subscribe to Independent Premium. Due to the sheer scale of this comment community, we are not able to give each post the same level of attention, but we have preserved this area in the interests of open debate. Please continue to respect all commenters and create constructive debates.

Source: https://news.google.com/__i/rss/rd/articles/CBMikQFodHRwczovL3d3dy5pbmRlcGVuZGVudC5jby51ay9uZXdzL3dvcmxkL2FtZXJpY2FzL3VzLXBvbGl0aWNzL3RydW1wLW5ld3MtbGl2ZS11cy1lbGVjdGlvbi1kZWJhdGUtYmlkZW4tdGF4LXJldHVybnMtMjAyMC1wb2xscy11cGRhdGUtYjY4ODcyMC5odG1s0gEA?oc=5

News – Trump denies wanting Ivanka as 2016 VP – follow live