Every president since the 1970s has released his tax information, but Trump broke that tradition as he was running for president in the 2016 election. The call for his tax records has lingered ever since and has remained a mystery until now.
The New York Times reports that Trump did not pay any income taxes in 10 of the previous 15 years, and he only paid $750 in income taxes during his first year as president. According to the report, he’s accumulated hundreds of millions of dollars in debt, and his filings to the IRS show massive losses that allowed him to avoid paying taxes. For the last decade, the IRS has been undergoing an audit on a $72.9 million tax refund Trump claimed, and The New York Times reports that a ruling against the president could cost him more than $100 million.
“The Apprentice” has brought Trump a total of $427.4 million through endorsements and licensing deals, according to the investigation. He went on to invest much of that sum in golf courses and other businesses, which recently have lost a lot of money. Trump got away with not paying income taxes on his “Apprentice” income thanks to reporting losses from his other businesses.
Trump has written off many other costs as business expenses, such as haircuts, meals, property taxes, private jet trips and Mar-a-Lago linens. The New York Times reports that Trump paid $70,000 in hairstyling while on “The Apprentice.” Nine Trump companies have written off at least $94,000 paid for Ivanka Trump’s hair and makeup stylist.
Unexplained consulting fees that were written off as business expenses also reduced the amount Trump was required to pay in taxes. Since 2010, he has written off $26 million in consulting fees, and Ivanka Trump appears to have received a portion of those costs through a consulting company she co-owns, The New York Times reports.
The bombshell investigation comes less than six weeks away from the 2020 election, and just two days before Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are set to debate for the first time.