Trump 2005 tax files released by MSNBC, White House rips ‘desperate’ story
Published March 14, 2017
In another major leak for the White House, MSNBC on Tuesday night released a portion of President Trump’s 2005 tax documents – drawing a stern rebuke from the administration.
Host Rachel Maddow said the two-page summary of Trump’s federal return for that year was first obtained by journalist David Cay Johnston, who gave MSNBC a first look at the documents.
It is unclear who leaked them. Johnston, with the website DCReport.org, said only that he found the documents “in the mail.”
Citing the files, they said Trump made $153 million that year and paid $36.5 million in taxes, which Johnston suggested was relatively low and the result of a benefit.
The return shows the then-real estate mogul also reported a business loss of $103 million that year, although the documents don’t provide detail. The forms show that Trump paid an effective tax rate of 24.5 percent, a figure well above the roughly 10 percent the average American taxpayer forks over each year, but below the 27.4 percent that taxpayers earning 1 million dollars a year average, according to data from the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.
The White House pre-emptively pushed back minutes before the on-air report, saying that publishing the returns would be illegal.
“You know you are desperate for ratings when you are willing to violate the law to push a story about two pages of tax returns from over a decade ago,” a senior administration official said in a statement.
The official added it is “totally illegal to steal and publish tax returns.”
The statement also acknowledged Trump made over $150 million that year, while saying he paid $38 million in income taxes – noting he had a responsibility to his company and family “to pay no more tax than legally required.” The statement said he also paid “tens of millions of dollars in other taxes such as sales and excise taxes and employment taxes and this illegally published return proves just that.”
Maddow countered that the return was “not illegally published,” and argued that MSNBC was exercising its First Amendment right to publish information in the public interest.
26 U.S. Code § 6103 – Confidentiality and disclosure of returns and return information
(a)Returns and return information shall be confidential, and except as authorized by this title—
(1) no officer or employee of the United States,
(3) no other person (or officer or employee thereof) who has or had access to returns or return information
no officer or employee of the United States…
Shall disclose any return or return information obtained by him in any manner in connection with his service as such an officer or an employee or otherwise or under the provisions of this section. For purposes of this subsection, the term “officer or employee” includes a former officer or employee.
j(4) Anonymous form -No person who receives a return or return information under this subsection shall disclose such return or return information to any person other than the taxpayer to whom it relates except in a form which cannot be associated with, or otherwise identify, directly or indirectly, a particular taxpayer.
The unauthorized release or publishing of federal tax returns is a criminal offense, punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and up to five years in jail.
Read the entire article HERE.
‘Objective journalism and an opinion column are about as similar as the Bible and Playboy magazine.” Walter Cronkite – BrainyQuote
The descent of mainstream media into “rag” news is disgusting and an outrage. They do not deserve to continue to call themselves “News” stations nor should they ever again refer to themselves as honest or unbiased. Their fall into the liberal world socialist regime shill status is sickening.
At one time people depended upon their reports and statistics to provide information needed to make decisions. Now every word is suspect.
Either clean up your acts and go back to being what citizens expect or simply close your doors. Geez. There are more than enough fake and “third rate” outlets without adding more.