President Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., dismissed a recent bombshell story published by The New York Times that reported his father paid no income taxes for 10 of the 15 years that preceded his winning the presidency, and $750 in tax in 2016 and 2017.
Trump Jr. defended his father during an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Monday, a day after the Times published its report, claiming the president has actually paid “tens of millions of taxes.”
“People don’t understand what goes into a business,” Trump Jr. said, reacting to the recent coverage from the Times. “It doesn’t include property taxes. It doesn’t include payroll taxes. It doesn’t include real-estate taxes.”
“It doesn’t include so many of the things that he’s been paying taxes on forever as he’s also putting thousands and thousands people to work on an annual basis,” he continued.
The Times reported on Sunday that Trump employed various tactics to avoid paying federal income taxes, such as taking advantage of multiple write-offs.
“But of course The New York Times does this,” Trump Jr. said on Monday. “They put out a selective picture of all of these things the day before a debate to try to give someone like joe Biden an attack line. They come up with one or two catchy sound bites and that’s the game.”
Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) slammed the president and said his reported tax practices amounted to a “disdain for America’s working families.” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) tweeted that the president “contributed less to funding our communities than waitresses & undocumented immigrants.”
Rather than releasing his tax returns, Trump has instead bashed the Times’s reporting and assailed what he called the “Fake News Media” in a series of tweets on Monday, writing: “The Fake News Media, just like Election time 2016, is bringing up my Taxes & all sorts of other nonsense with illegally obtained information & only bad intent.”
“I paid many millions of dollars in taxes but was entitled, like everyone else, to depreciation & tax credits,” he wrote. “Also, if you look at the extraordinary assets owned by me, which the Fake News hasn’t, I am extremely under leveraged — I have very little debt compared to the value of assets.”