The New York Times publication of Donald Trump’s records is one of the biggest bombs to hit an unprecedented election campaign in 2020 already hit by a litany of scandals, a bitter fight for a Supreme Court nomination and a pandemic in which 7 million Americans have been infected and over 200,000 have died, during a failed federal response.
The President’s taxes have long been the great white whale of political journalists in America as well as prosecutors keen to find evidence of wrongdoing. Democrats, too, were eager to seize it as a potentially revolutionary stick to beat the Trump campaign.
The Times, with its shock report published Sunday night, appears to have won the race. His release of document details could send shockwaves throughout the campaign as the first key debate between Trump and challenger Joe Biden looms in Ohio on Tuesday night.
Here are some of its main findings:
Trump pays little tax
The Times reported that Trump paid no federal income tax for 11 out of 18 years, according to the newspaper. In 2017, after becoming president, his tax bill was only $ 750. This is despite Trump often mocking taxes in America and ushering in a series of tax cuts that critics say mostly help the rich and big business.
The Times said of Trump’s immediate predecessors: “Barack Obama and George W. Bush each regularly paid over $ 100,000 a year. “
A long audit – with potentially high costs
Trump is involved in a decade-long audit with the Internal Revenue Service into a $ 72.9 million tax refund he claimed and received after declaring huge losses. A ruling against him could cost him more than $ 100 million, the Times reported.
He added, “In 2011, the IRS began an audit examining the legitimacy of the refund. Almost a decade later, the case is still unresolved, for reasons unknown, and could ultimately end up in federal court, where it could become a matter of public domain.
Ivanka helps reduce Trump’s tax burden
The president’s eldest daughter, while working as an employee of the Trump organization, appears to have received “consulting fees” which helped lower the family’s tax bill, the Times reported. Such a revelation could further tarnish the reputation of Ivanka, a senior White House adviser married to fellow White House Jared Kushner, who often tries to distance herself from some of her father’s administration’s biggest scandals. It is widely believed that she harbors her own political ambitions after Trump leaves.
The Times reported: “Trump’s private records show his company has already paid $ 747,622 in fees to an anonymous consultant for hotel projects in Hawaii and Vancouver, British Columbia. Ivanka Trump’s public disclosure forms – which she filed when joining White House staff in 2017 – show that she received an identical amount through a consulting firm she co-owned.
Trump companies lose money
The Times has been blunt in its assessment of Trump’s businesses, which it often boasts and on whose back it sought to promote a carefully curated image as a business master. “Trump’s major businesses – from his constellation of golf courses to his conservative hotel in Washington – report losing millions, if not tens of millions of dollars year after year,” the newspaper said.
He details how since 2000 Trump has said he has lost more than $ 315 million on his golf courses, much of which came from Trump National Doral in Florida. His Washington hotel, which opened in 2016 and has been the subject of much speculation about federal ethics laws, has lost more than $ 55 million.
Trump has a big bill to pay
The newspaper also reported that Trump is facing a major financial bill as over the next four years hundreds of millions of dollars in loans will fall due. The newspaper said Trump was personally responsible for many of these obligations.
The newspaper reports: “In the 1990s, Mr. Trump almost went bankrupt by personally guaranteeing hundreds of millions of dollars in loans, and he has since said he regrets doing so. But he took the same step again, according to his tax records. He appears to be responsible for loans totaling $ 421 million, most of which mature within four years. ”
In a blunt summary of the problem, The Times speculated, “If he were to be re-elected, his lenders could be placed in the unprecedented position of questioning whether to oust a sitting president.”
Trump’s companies profit from his presidency
The question of whether Trump’s businesses benefit from his position in the White House has been a longstanding theme in reporting on the Trump presidency. The global nature of the Trump organization and its portfolio of hotels, resorts, and other interests has left Trump open to speculation that lobbyists, business leaders and foreign powers might spend money on it. the money to try to sell influence in the United States.
The Times report on his tax returns makes it clear that Trump’s businesses have indeed benefited from his political career.
“Since becoming one of the main presidential candidates, he has received large sums of money from lobbyists, politicians and foreign officials who pay to stay at his properties or join his clubs », Reported the newspaper, before detailing the sums paid to its Mar-a-. Largo resort in Florida, his hotel in Washington and other places.