Sunday, May 14, 2017

AP reports Trump's tax returns show no Russian money ... except none of that is true (mark Sumner) · Friday, May 12, 2017, 1:22 pm

Big breaking news … except for the part where it’s not big, or breaking, or news.

BREAKING: Trump lawyer: Tax returns from past 10 years show no "income of any type from Russian sources," with few exceptions.
— The Associated Press (@AP) May 12, 2017
It sure sounds important, and provides a nice distraction from Trump throwing a raving fit and threatening the FBI director he fired earlier in the week and admitting he fired that FBI director over the Russia investigation after saying that it was definitely not about the Russia investigation and wasn’t really Trump’s idea at all. Anyway …

So Trump released ten years worth of tax returns? No. No, he didn’t. What he released was a letter from his lawyers. That letter claims that Trump’s company, the Trump Organization, hasn’t had any Russian income since 2005. So, no Russian income. Except, you know, for the $13 million everyone already knew about and the $95 million home he sold to a Russian oligarch at more than twice its market price. So, only over a hundred million in Russian income. Oh, and other things that were “not identified as ‘Russian’ in your books and records and therefore not separately reflected on your tax returns.” So, somewhere between the hundred million everyone already knows about and infinity.

There’s also the little problem that the statement doesn’t even begin to address other issues. Issues like companies that are incorporated elsewhere, but whose funding originates in Russia. Like say, the company that’s headquartered in Trump Tower.

Hunting for partners with cash, he turned to a small upstart called the Bayrock Group ...

And you can bet that the numbers from Bayrock? They’re not on that list of Russia funding. But they should be.


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