In the past few weeks, billionaire Donald Trump's presidential campaign has taken some major hits. Just in the past few days, damning audio footage has been released showing that he clearly disrespects and belittles women to an extreme degree (again).
Just prior to that, a 1995 tax document was leaked which showed that he may not have paid any federal income tax for a long, long time. His 1995 return shows a $916 million loss, which allows him legally to avoid paying income tax for 18 years. At the very least, he could cancel out about $50 million of taxable income each year during that period.
Why is this such a huge problem for his campaign? Because he has repeatedly criticized wealthy individuals and business (and half the country) for not paying their fair share of taxes. Here are a few examples:
In this one, he calls out Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin:
Facebook billionaire gives up his U.S. citizenship in order to save taxes. I guess 3.8 billion isn't enough for (cont) http://t.co/xaPBfxlm
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 14, 2012
Mitt Romney's returns "made him look like a fool." Oh did they?
Mitt Romney,who totally blew an election that should have been won and whose tax returns made him look like a fool, is now playing tough guy
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2016
Here he is with a big stack of paper. Must be hard.
Signing a recent tax return- isn't this ridiculous? pic.twitter.com/UdwqF4iZIZ
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 25, 2016
There's no way you'll ever pay as much as he does…
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 28, 2013
20.5% > 0%
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2012
Higher taxes for the hedge fund folks!
The hedge fund guys (gals) have to pay higher taxes ASAP. They are paying practically nothing. We must reduce taxes for the middle class!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 5, 2015
Amazon is only winning because they cheat!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 7, 2015
Also, if you're part of this half of the country, you're the real problem…
HALF of Americans don't pay income tax despite crippling govt debt…http://t.co/gDAUj0Kt
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 23, 2012
Trump's campaign defended him, saying, "Mr. Trump is a highly-skilled businessman who has a fiduciary responsibility to his business, his family and his employees to pay no more tax than legally required."