Tuesday’s disclosure of two pages from Trump’s 2005 federal returns marked the second time in the last seven months that portions of Trump’s tax filings have been leaked to reporters.
In October, The New York Times published a story based on a leaked portion of Trump’s 1995 state tax returns in multiple states, showing that he declared a massive $916 million loss that year that could have enabled him to avoid paying federal income taxes for nearly two decades.
And on Tuesday, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter David Cay Johnston unveiled some details of Trump’s 2005 federal income tax return on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.”
Johnston said Tuesday evening that Trump has a “long history of leaking material about himself when he thinks it’s in his interests.” While that is a possibility, he told sources Wednesday morning that “the anger with which the White House responded suggests” it isn’t likely Trump leaked his own tax document.
The tax documents aired on MSNBC match figures given by the White House in a statement Tuesday, which said Trump had paid $38 million in taxes on income of more than $150 million for 2005.
Trump paid “no more tax than legally required,” a spokesperson for the White House said in response to MSNBC’s report.
Trump promised during the 2016 presidential campaign to release his tax returns, but has repeatedly refused to do so, citing an IRS audit he has yet to show proof of.
The president tweeted Wednesday morning: “Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, ‘went to his mailbox’ and found my tax returns? – FAKE NEWS!”