The New York Times has obtained — and begun publishing information about — the financial records, including tax returns, of President Donald Trump. This information has been a subject of conversation for years on end, as Trump has adamantly refused to release any of his tax returns of his own accord, which broke with longstanding presidential precedent. Now, the Times reveals some startling details, like the fact that across 2016 and 2017, Trump paid a grand total of $1,500 in income taxes. (He paid $750 in each year.) Those numbers mean that large swathes of Americans pay more income taxes than Trump has apparently been paying.
Following their revelation of Trump’s low income tax payments for 2016 and 2017, the Times reveals that Trump “had paid no income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years — largely because he reported losing much more money than he made.” Furthermore, as it turns out, according to the Times, Trump actually is in a “battle” with the IRS — the fight is over a staggering tax refund that he received totaling a whopping $72.9 million. Trump could face a cost of over $100 million if that audit from the IRS ends with a ruling against him.
It’s worth noting — this huge possible debt to the federal government is yet another potential conflict of interest weighing over a Trump presidency. What if Trump tried to direct government policy in order to get out of having to pay the potential debt? According to the Times, the publication “has obtained tax-return data extending over more than two decades for Mr. Trump and the hundreds of companies that make up his business organization, including detailed information from his first two years in office.” Putting a steep shadow over the Trump administration, the publication adds that they plan to publish more articles about their findings in the “coming weeks.”
Although the Times says that the president’s financial records do not reveal previously unknown ties to Russia, they do reveal something significant — his public image as some kind of endlessly successful entrepreneur is a hollow sham. As the publication memorably puts it, referring to Trump’s stint as the host of the reality television show known as The Apprentice, “Ultimately, Mr. Trump has been more successful playing a business mogul than being one in real life.” Read more from The New York Times at THIS LINK.