During the Second Presidential Debate, CNN’s Anderson Cooper asked Donald Trump about the recent New York Times bombshell which revealed that the billionaire has skirted paying taxes for what could be nearly two decades. Trump admitted to using the nearly $1 billion loss as a means to avoid paying federal income taxes.
Cooper: The New York Times published three pages of your 1995 tax returns that show you claimed a $960 million loss, which means you could have avoided paying personal federal income taxes for years. You’ve said you pay state taxes, employee taxes, real estate taxes, property taxes. You have not answered, though, a simple question. Did you use that $960 million loss to avoid paying personal federal income taxes?
Trump: Of course I did. Of course I did. And so do all of her donors, or most of her donors. I know many of her donors. Her donors took massive tax write offs. . . . I absolutely used it and so did Warren Buffett and so did George Soros and so did many of the other people that Hillary is getting money from.
And, then he went after Warren Buffett, who is a Hillary Clinton supporter and also a well respected across the country.
Mr. Buffett fired back, providing the facts regarding his own 2015 tax returns for which he accounts for some reasonable deductions, but also mentions he gave away $2.8 billion dollars worth of charitable contributions, for which he only deducted the allowable $3.4 million from his taxes.
He also pointed out that he actually paid $1.8 million in taxes. From what we can surmise, that’s $1.8 million more than Donald Trump paid this year, or in any of the last 18 years.
And, TRUMP’S the one running for president of the country for which his fortune was built upon.
— Carl Quintanilla (@carlquintanilla) October 10, 2016
Donald Trump has continually avoided releasing any information about his taxes, excusing the lack of transparency because “he is currently under audit.” In Trump’s world, this prevents him from providing the American people information that has been commonly expected from and provided by those running for the highest office in the land.
Buffett called Trump’s bluff saying:
Finally, I have been audited by the IRS multiple times and am currently being audited. I have no problem releasing my tax information while under audit. Neither would Mr. Trump — at least he would have no legal problem.
Yep, Buffett called bullshit on Trump’s claim, only solidifying what has been suspected all along. Trump’s avoidance of showing us the money has absolutely nothing to do with legality and everything to do with public relations.
If THIS is better PR than what is actually in his tax returns, you know it has to be really bad.
Featured image via Getty Images/Paul Morigi/Stringer