The White House published what it claims is Donald Trump’s 2005 tax information minutes before Rachel Maddow aired those documents on her show Tuesday night.
Speaking on background, a White House official said, “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.”
“Before being elected President, Mr. Trump was one of the most successful businessmen in the world with a responsibility to his company, his family and his employees to pay no more tax than legally required,” the official continued. “That being said, Mr. Trump paid $38 million dollars even after taking into account large scale depreciation for construction, on an income of more than $150 million dollars, as well as paying 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.”
“Despite this substantial income figure and tax paid, it is totally illegal to steal and publish tax returns. The dishonest media can continue to make this part of their agenda, while the President will focus on his, which includes tax reform that will benefit all Americans.”
Shortly before her show aired Tuesday night, the MSNBC host wrote on Twitter that she had obtained the president’s returns from 2005.
BREAKING: We’ve got Trump tax returns. Tonight, 9pm ET. MSNBC.
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) March 14, 2017