Are you like most other Americans tired of hearing the incessant demeaning of Americans who have made money and subsequently are wealthy? Democrats consistently rant and rave about “the top one percent” of Americans being evil because they are wealthy. Have you ever heard Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein, Joe Biden, or any other prominent Democrats “self-demean?” Those who I just mentioned are each filthy- rich by the standards they set themselves in their attack against those who are wealthy maintaining their mantra: “They don’t pay enough! Middle-Class Americans pick up more than their fair share just to subsidize the government for the taxes the rich don’t pay because of loopholes!”
Have you heard that once or twice? There are so many ironies in that talking point that we cannot waste your time detailing them. Have you ever heard any of them include themselves in those allegations of others being “greedy and un-American for not paying more?” Certainly not! Their unspoken justification for that massive wealth is, “I’m in the U.S. Congress and a leader in Washington D.C. That entitles me to take advantage of the IRS tax code (that they wrote!) to cut my taxes as low as possible. But it’s not fair for anyone who is NOT a leader in Washington to do the same thing — using tax deductions to minimize their federal tax bills.”
Who’s In Dems Perpetual “Tax-Cheat” Bullseye?
President Donald Trump!
While the Joe Biden campaign was quick to leap on a New York Times story that President Donald Trump paid a small amount in personal income taxes in recent years, there’s far more to the story than any in the Mainstream Media care to share with Americans.
President Donald Trump is disputing a New York Times report that he paid just $750 in federal income taxes the year he ran for president and in his first year in the White House. Trump, who has fiercely guarded his tax filings and is the only president in modern times not to make them public, paid no federal income taxes in 10 of the past 15 years, The Times reported Sunday. More recently, the president’s financial disclosures indicated he earned at least $434.9 million in 2018, but the tax filings reported a $47.4 million loss.
The report, which the Times said comes from tax return data it obtained extending over two decades, comes at a pivotal moment ahead of the first presidential debate Tuesday and weeks before a divisive election against Democrat Joe Biden.
Speaking at a news conference Sunday at the White House, Trump dismissed the report as “fake news” and said he has paid taxes, though he gave no specifics. He also vowed that information about his taxes “will all be revealed,” but he offered no timeline for the disclosure and made similar promises during the 2016 campaign.
The president has fielded court challenges against those seeking access to his returns, including the U.S. House, which is suing for access to Trump’s tax returns as part of congressional oversight.
During his first two years as president, Trump received $73 million from foreign operations, which in addition to his golf properties in Scotland and Ireland included $3 million from the Philippines, $2.3 million from India and $1 million from Turkey, The Times reported. The president in 2017 paid $145,400 in taxes in India and $156,824 in the Philippines, compared to just $750 in U.S. income taxes, according to The Times.
Trump has taken tax deductions on personal expenses such as housing, aircraft and $70,000 in haircare. Losses in the property businesses solely owned and managed by Trump appear to have offset income from his stake in the television show “The Apprentice” and other entities with multiple owners.
During the first two years of his presidency, Trump relied on business tax credits to reduce his tax obligations, according to the report. The Times said $9.7 million worth of business investment credits that were submitted after Trump requested an extension to file his taxes allowed him to reduce his income and pay just $750 each in 2016 and 2017.
A lawyer for the Trump Organization, Alan Garten, told The Times that “most, if not all, of the facts appear to be inaccurate.” He said in a statement to the news organization that the president “has paid tens of millions of dollars in personal taxes to the federal government, including paying millions in personal taxes since announcing his candidacy in 2015.” The New York Times said it declined Garten’s request for the tax filings in order to protect its sources.
Due to the nature of Trump’s business being primarily in real estate development, tax law does provide for significant tax credits, deductions, and depreciation to encourage entrepreneurs to take risks.
Trump’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., also addressed the Times story in an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Monday, pointing to the development of the Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C., as an example for which his father received tax credits. “My father’s paid tens of millions of taxes,” Trump Jr., said. “If he does things in certain years where you get depreciation, where you get the write-off, where you get historical tax credits like we did when we took on the risk of building the Old Post Office in D.C.” The Old Post Office Building, originally constructed in the 1890s not far from the White House, reopened as a newly renovated Trump hotel in October 2016.
“That was literally a government contract,” Trump Jr. recounted. “We bid against every hotel company in the world. Historical tax credits that you use to offset tax payments for taking the risk to build that. That was done under the Obama administration. It literally took an act of Congress to get it done.”
The president’s son further suggested that while his father’s federal income tax due may be low any given year, he still had to pay property taxes and payroll taxes (Social Security and Medicare) among others. Trump Jr. also pointed out that his father put “thousands and thousands of people to work on an annual basis” through his various business ventures. Those people pay taxes too.
How About Sleepy Joe and Wife Jill and THEIR Income Tax Issues?
Joe and his wife Jill Biden funneled millions in income through a pair of S corporations they set up in Delaware as a way to circumnavigate paying Social Security and Medicare taxes, according to an August opinion article in The Wall Street Journal.
Of the nearly $13.3 million the couple took in primarily through speaking fees and book royalties during the 2017 and 2018 tax years, they claimed just $750,000 in income. The other 94 percent of the money passed through the corporations as direct distribution to the Bidens, preventing it from being subject to the up to 15.3 percent combined Social Security and Medicare tax rate, according to CNBC.
The Internal Revenue Service requires S corps to pay “reasonable compensation” to employee shareholders before making non-wage distributions to them. The nature of the business dictates what should be characterized as income and what can be a distribution to an employee shareholder as money generated from the business. “But to the extent that gross receipts are generated by the shareholder’s personal services, then payments to the shareholder-employee should be classified as wages that are subject to employment taxes [Social Security and Medicare],” IRS guidance reads.