Home News Trump’s tax returns show links to China and other countries. Here’s what else they reveal

Trump’s tax returns show links to China and other countries. Here’s what else they reveal

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In one of its latest acts under the scrutiny of Democrats, the US House of Representatives on Friday released former President Donald Trump’s six-year prison sentence for tax returns, dating back to 2015, the year he announced his presidential candidacy.

Thousands of pages of financial documents have become the subject of a drawn-out legal battle after Trump broke precedent by not releasing his tax returns while running for and then serving the nation’s top office.

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Donald Trump’s tax returns have been released after years of fighting with Congress

Few points from the document review:

The longtime real estate and media mogul with business interests on multiple continents was questioned during a 2020 presidential debate about owning a bank account in China. He said he shut it down before he started campaigning in 2016 – his tax association is incorrect.

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“The bank account was in 2013 and closed in 2015, I think,” Trump said during the debate. “I was thinking about making a deal in China. Like millions of people, I thought about it. I decided not to.”

However, tax returns show that Trump had a bank account in China in 2015, 2016 and 2017.

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What’s next in Donald Trump’s tax returns?

The returns show accounts in other foreign countries over the years, including the United Kingdom, Southern Ireland, and the Caribbean island nation of Saint Martin. By 2018, Trump had apparently closed all of his overseas accounts except those in the United Kingdom, which is home to one of his major golf properties.

Returns do not divide the amount of money held in these accounts.

China is one of many countries where Trump has said he has made money over the years.

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He said that the total foreign revenues amounted to $38 million in 2016 and $55 million in 2017 from countries such as Azerbaijan, India, Indonesia, Panama, the Philippines, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

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Obama says Trump may owe more to foreign countries than he pays to the United States

This kind of information about potential conflicts of interest for the commander-in-chief of the United States is one reason presidents release their tax returns.

We do not know where this foreign money comes from. Trump also claimed losses and expenses worth tens of millions of dollars in his overseas investments, but his debts there sometimes exceeded those in the United States. In 2016, for example, Trump told the Internal Revenue Service that he had paid $1.2 million from abroad. taxes. , while he ended up paying only $750 in US income taxes.

It has long been known that Trump, like many wealthy people, was able to exploit the country’s complex tax laws to avoid paying as much of his income to the federal government as working families do. When Trump was asked about not paying federal taxes during a 2016 debate against Democrat Hillary Clinton, he replied, “It makes me smart.”

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It also highlights the two-tiered tax system that allows wealthy people like Trump to take advantage of exemptions and loopholes not available to ordinary families. In 2020, for example, Trump said he owns more than 150 private companies that have suffered losses, sometimes running into millions of dollars. In part by claiming these losses, Trump cut federal taxes to zero that year.

Click to play video: 'US presidential debate: Biden urges Trump to release tax returns after Trump claims he paid 'millions'

US presidential debate: Biden pressures Trump to release tax returns after Trump claims he paid ‘millions’

Some of these losses were real as the coronavirus pandemic battered the economy. But others reflect special deductions that developers like Trump can take for depreciation of buildings and equipment.

Some of Trump’s alleged losses can be called into question – one of the companies he said he owns is called Unpaid Expenses. The Joint Tax Committee noted that one of Trump’s companies alleged $438,000 in losses for gift cards and called for further investigation to determine if the losses were real — one of several deductions the Democratic-controlled committee called for further investigation.

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This is the kind of deduction that the typical American family making $70,000 a year can’t afford.

No charitable donations were reported in 2020

In the final year of his presidency, Trump said he made no charitable donations.

This contrasts with what happened two years ago, when Trump announced $500,000 in donations. It was not clear if any of these figures included his pledge to donate his $400,000 presidential salary to the US government.

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Details of Trump’s tax return will be revealed after US lawmakers vote to release him

Trump, who prides himself on being a billionaire, told the Associated Press in 2015 that he gives to “hundreds of charities and people who need help.”

He said, “It is one of the things I like to do the most and one of the big reasons why I earn a lot of money.”

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He reported larger donations in 2016 and 2017, donating $1.1 million the year he won the presidency and $1.8 million the first year in office.

The art of world money

Trump received an annual pension of $77,808 from the Screen Actors Guild, plus $6,543 annually in 2017 from another film and television union, and reported remaining representation of $14,141 in 2015, according to tax returns.

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Trump dismisses a report that he paid little or no income taxes

Trump has appeared in several movies, including Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, but his biggest screen success came with his reality TV shows “The Apprentice” and “The Celebrity Apprentice,” each episode ending with a conference session. Trump fired a contestant with his trademark slogan, “You’re fired!” »

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Trump also said he paid just over $400,000 from 2015 to 2017 “writer’s fees.” In 2015, Trump released Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again with a ghostwriter.

In 2015, Trump said he received a $750,000 speaking fee.

Trump broke political tradition by not releasing his tax returns as president. Now Republicans are warning that Democrats will pay a political price by disclosing normally classified tax information.

Trump himself referred to this in a statement released Friday morning after announcing his return. “The great divide in the United States is now going to get worse,” Trump said. “The Radical Left Democrats have everything armed, but remember it’s a dangerous two-way street!”

Click to play video: 'Trump says New York Times report on his tax returns is 'fake news'

Trump claims New York Times report on his tax returns is ‘fake news’

Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee, which has tax jurisdiction and released Trump documents, warned that in the future the committee could release statements from union leaders or Supreme Court justices. Democrats responded with a motion demanding the release of any presidential candidate’s tax returns — legislation that is unlikely to pass, given Republican control of the House of Representatives next week.

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Notably, the Republican Party cannot release President Joe Biden’s tax returns because they are already public. Biden has resumed the long bipartisan tradition of releasing his tax records, revealing 22 years of statements he made during his presidential campaign.

Authors Jill Colvin and Michael R. Cisak in New York and Chris Rugaber in Washington contributed to this report.

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