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President Donald Trump blasts release of 2005 tax form, reporter’s account

By Jill Colvin and Jeff Horwitz

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump earned $153 million and paid $36.5 million in income taxes in 2005, paying a roughly 25 percent effective tax rate thanks to a tax he has since sought to eliminate, according to newly disclosed tax documents.

The pages from Trump’s federal tax return show the real estate mogul also reported a business loss of $103 million that year, although the documents don’t provide detail. The forms show that Trump paid an effective tax rate of 24.5 percent, a figure well above the roughly 10 percent the average American taxpayer forks over each year, but below the 27.4 percent that taxpayers earning 1 million dollars a year average were paying at the time, according to data from the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.

The tax form was obtained by Pulitzer prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston, who runs the website DCReport.org, and reported on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.” Johnston, who has long reported on tax issues, said he received the documents in the mail, unsolicited.

Trump took to Twitter early Wednesday to cast doubt on Johnston’s account.

“Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, ‘went to his mailbox’ and found my tax returns? @NBCNews  FAKE NEWS!”

Johnston, speaking to ABC’s “Good Morning America” Wednesday, said it’s entirely possible that he received the returns from Trump himself or someone close to him, saying, “Donald has a long history of leaking things about himself.”

He noted that the real question remains the sources of Trump’s income, saying Trump doesn’t want us to know “who he’s beholden to.”

Trump’s hefty business loss appears to be a continued benefit from his use of a tax loophole in the 1990s, which allowed him to deduct previous losses in future years. In 1995, Trump reported a loss of more than $900 million, largely as a result of financial turmoil at his casinos.