Former President Donald Trump and his wife Melania paid no taxes in 2020, Donald’s last full year in office, and reported negative income four times in six years, according to their tax returns. His MAGA supporters’ donations to the Republican Party have funded Trump’s growing legal liabilities.
Trump faces 23 criminal and civil cases with more expected, according to Just Security, an online forum for the rigorous analysis of security, democracy, foreign policy, and rights.
The Trumps claim they had negative income in four of the six years from 2015 and 2020, with an adjusted gross income of negative $53.2 million during that time, New York Post reported.
In three of those years — 2015, 2016 and 2017 –the Trumps reported income tax liability of just $750, according to a report from the House Ways and Means Committee. Their total federal tax liability, including self-employment and household employment taxes, was $4.4 million.
The Republican National Committee confirmed in 2021 that it was paying for some legal fees “that relate to politically motivated legal proceedings waged against President Trump.” In 2022, the RNC funded Trump’s defense against investigations started by the now-former Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. and New York Attorney General Letitia James.
The Democrat-controlled committee voted 24-16 along party lines Dec. 19 to release the Trumps’ tax returns following a legal battle that began in 2016.
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Earlier this month, a Manhattan trial jury found the Trump Organization guilty of criminal tax fraud.
His former lawyer, Michael Cohen, who served time for tax and bank fraud, suggested that Trump isn’t serious about another presidential run and is only in it for the money. Cohen told CNN that he thinks Trump is not “going to be able to run with all the litigation and the sedition that he’s committed against this country.”
It’s just more of “the great grift of Donald,” Cohen said. It’s about getting his voter base “to send in more money under the guise that he’s going to run.”
Trump was the first White House candidate in 40 years to refuse to voluntarily disclose his tax returns when he ran for office in the 2016 campaign, citing a supposed audit — even though an audit would not have precluded him from making the returns public.
The Republican National Committee cannot pay former President Trump’s legal bills if he announces a bid for the White House in 2024, RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel told CNN.
“We cannot pay legal bills for any candidate that’s announced. So these are bills that came from the Letitia James lawsuit that started while he was president,” McDaniel said. “It was voted on by our executive committee for our former president, that this was a politically motivated investigation and that’s what it’s been.”
“But we cannot do in-kind contributions to any candidate right now. He’s the former president being attacked from every which way with lawsuits, and he’s certainly raised more under the RNC than we’ve spent on these bills.”
The super PAC known as MAGA Inc. reported more than $54 million cash on hand in late November, with most of that money coming from transfers from Trump’s Save America PAC — his main political vehicle after losing the 2020 election, Politico reported.
Images: Donald Trump campaigns on April 17, 2016, in Staten Island. (zz/Dennis Van Tine/STAR MAX/IPx) / IRS payments (STRF/STAR MAX/IPx 2021 4/28/21)