Rachel Maddow Reveals Trump’s Leaked 2005 Filing Showing That He Paid $38 Million On The $150 Million He Declared.
The White House was left fuming Tuesday night as Rachel Maddow revealed that she had obtained Donald Trump’s tax returns.
In her MSNBC show, Maddow said that the 2005 document had been obtained by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston, Maddow said.
In response, an indignant White House told CNN: ‘You know you are desperate for ratings when you’re prepared to violate the law to push a story about tax returns from over a decade ago.’
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The release concludes that ‘it is totally illegal to steal and publish tax returns,’ and fired off a parting shot about the ‘dishonest media.’
Johnston told Maddow that the documents were placed in his mail box by an unknown party, adding that so long as they are not solicited, neither he nor Maddow had done anything illegal.
Maddow added that the First Amendment protected her right to report on the documents.
He also speculated that Trump might have leaked the documents himself, saying he had done so many times before ‘when it was in his interest’.
The documents show Trump and wife Melania paying $5.3 million in regular federal income tax, at a rate of less than 3.5 per cent,The Daily Beast said.
He also paid $31 million in the ‘alternative minimum tax,’ which is something that Trump has previously said he wanted to abolish.
‘If we didn’t have the alternative minimum tax,’ Johnston said, ‘he would have paid tax at a lower tax rate than the poorest people in this country.’
The Trumps made $418,000 a day, he said, while paying the equivalent tax of a middle-class American couple, having received a 20 per cent ‘discount’ on his taxes.
He added that the $38 million given by the White House was artificially inflated.
Trump has associated with both US and Russian criminals during his life, he added.
Maddow suggested at the top of the show that the tax returns might shed light on Trump’s own dealings, many of which have been opaque until now.
She reeled off a list of questions about Trump’s international relationships: Why did Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev pay $95 million for Donald Trump’s Palm Beach mansion in 2008, more than $50 million he originally paid, she asked?
Why was attorney general Preet Bharara fired two days after being asked to investigate whether Trump had foreign sources of income?
She admitted that this one document would not answer those questions – but said this was ‘a start.’
In the run-up to the presidential election, Trump became the first presidential candidate since Richard Nixon’s era to refuse to disclose his tax returns.
He claimed that his tax returns could not be released because he was under audit, although the IRS said at the time there was no legal restriction on releasing taxes while under audit.
Hillary Clinton released her tax returns stretching back to 1997.