Donald Trump did not pay income taxes in 10 of the past 15 years beginning in 2000 because he reported losing significantly more than he earned, according to a report published Sunday by the New York Times.
The president paid just $ 750 in federal income taxes both in the year he won the presidency and in his first year in the White House, according to more than two decades of his tax return information obtained by the Times.
In a briefing on Sunday, Trump denied the New York Times story, saying he pays "a lot" in federal income taxes.
"I pay a lot and pay a lot in state income taxes," Trump said.
He added that he is willing to release his tax returns once he is no longer audited by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which he says "treats me badly."
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Trump has no obligation to withhold his tax returns while he's under audit, but he has been saying so for years.
The president repeatedly declined to answer how much he had paid in federal taxes at the briefing and dropped out when asked by CNN's Jeremy Diamond on the matter.
Trump's taxes have been largely a mystery since he ran for office.
During the 2016 campaign, the then-candidate broke the presidential election rules and refused to submit his tax returns for public review.
They have remained private since he took office.
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In response to a letter summarizing the newspaper's findings, Trump Organization attorney Alan Garten told the Times that "most, if not all, of the facts appear to be inaccurate" and requested the documents.
The New York Times said it will not release data from Trump's tax returns so as not to endanger his sources "who have taken enormous personal risks to help inform the public."
The tax return data obtained by the newspaper does not include your 2018 or 2019 personal returns.
Being audited by the IRS does not prevent someone from making your tax return public.
But that hasn't stopped Trump from using it as a defense against the disclosure of his financial information.
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Mask Trump, unmask his taxes
In 2016, Trump published a letter from his tax attorneys confirming that he was being audited.
But the letter also said that the IRS finished reviewing Trump's taxes from 2002 to 2008. Trump did not release his tax returns for those years, even though the audits had ended.
An earlier New York Times investigation published in 2018 reported that Trump had helped "his parents avoid taxes" in the 1990s, including "outright fraud cases" that allowed him to amass a fortune with them.
Trump received at least $ 413 million in today's dollars from his father's real estate empire, starting at age 3.
Donald Trump Tax The New York Times