Trump paid $ 38 million in taxes in 2005: White House

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: US President Donald Trump looks up as he hosts a luncheon of House and Senate leaders at the White House in Washington.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump paid $ 38 million in taxes on more than $ 150 million in revenue in 2005, the White House said on Tuesday, in response to an MSNBC report that the network had obtained two pages of the statements.

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow said she received the documents from journalist David Cay Johnston, who said on his show that he received them in the mail.

The statements, which MSNBC posted on its website, showed that Trump paid a 25 percent effective federal tax rate in 2005 after writing off $ 100 million in losses.

The White House said in a statement that Trump took into account “the large-scale depreciation of construction.”

Trump has repeatedly refused to release his tax returns, drawing criticism throughout his campaign last year and speculation from his political rivals that he was hiding something.

A New York Times report in October said Trump, a New York real estate developer, declared a loss of $ 916 million on his 1995 income tax returns. The newspaper said the large tax deduction could have allowed him to avoid the payment of federal income taxes for up to 18 years.

But statements released by MSNBC on Tuesday showed that he did pay taxes in 2005. The statements do not indicate whether he paid taxes in other years or how much he could have paid. The Washington Post reported last year that Trump paid no federal income taxes for at least two years in the late 1970s.

The White House said in a statement Tuesday that Trump, as head of the Trump Organization, had a responsibility “not to pay more taxes than is legally required.”

Presidents and top candidates for the White House have regularly released their income tax returns.

Trump says he has not released his tax returns because they are being audited by the Internal Revenue Service. Experts say that an IRS audit doesn’t stop someone from turning over the documents.

During a presidential debate in September, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton criticized Trump, a Republican, for failing to pay federal income taxes.

“That makes me smart,” he replied.

Trump has taken on the media since his inauguration, often accusing them of promoting “fake news” intended to undermine his presidency.

“The rogue media can continue to make this part of their agenda, while the president will focus on his own, which includes a tax reform that will benefit all Americans,” the White House said Tuesday.

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