David Cay Johnston Is The Reporter Who Received Donald Trump's Tax Returns

But they also paid $31.3 million in the alternative minimum tax, which mainly kicks in when people with high incomes use a lot of tax deductions.

On Tuesday night, Rachel Maddow dropped a bombshell on Twitter an hour before her MSNBC show, when she announced that she had a copy of Donald Trump's mysterious tax returns.

Trump broke with decades of precedent during the campaign by becoming the first major-party nominee since Richard Nixon during the 1970s to refuse to release his tax returns.

Mr Trump had suggested the tax return, published by MSNBC, was not authentic and said the story is merely "fake news". If not for the AMT, Trump would have paid an extremely low rate.

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 White House said in a statement on Tuesday that Trump, as head of the Trump Organization, had a responsibility "to pay no more tax than legally required".

- Trump paid his taxes under the alternative minimum tax, which is created to prevent wealthy individuals from paying no taxes at all.

"Donald has a long history of leaking material about himself when he thinks it's in his interests".

The White House released the statement before Maddow went on the air, and she said her staff asked the administration to verify the documents as authentic.

Maddow then reiterated that the issue of Trump's tax return was important, because there were still questions of his sources of income and the integrity of his statements about his wealth.

In the first presidential debate, when Hillary Clinton accused him of not having paid federal tax in years, Trump responded, "That makes me smart".

At publish time, the White House hasn't commented on those allegations.

It's clear that the MSNBC star hit a nerve in the Trump White House by revealing something that no one in the media has yet been able to - his tax returns, even if it was just a portion.

  • Leroy Wright