Trump blasts reporter over release of tax form
President Donald Trump is criticizing the reporter who released a portion of Trump's 2005 tax return, casting doubt on the reporter's account of how he obtained the form.
The tax forms were obtained by the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston, and reported on MSNBC's "The Rachel Maddow Show" Tuesday. Johnston, who has long reported on tax issues, said he received the documents in the mail, unsolicited.
But in a tweet Wednesday, Trump asked, "Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, "went to his mailbox" and found my tax returns? NBCNews FAKE NEWS!"
Trump has refused to release his taxes, saying he is under routine IRS audit.
The returns showed that Trump payed a roughly 25 percent effective tax rate thanks to a tax he has since sought to eliminate.
The White House says President Donald Trump made more than $150 million in income in 2005 and paid $38 million in income taxes that year.
The acknowledgement comes as MSNBC host Rachel Maddow says she has obtained part of Trump's 2005 tax forms.
The White House is pushing back pre-emptively, saying that publishing those returns would be illegal.
It says, "You know you are desperate for ratings when you are willing to violate the law to push a story about two pages of tax returns from over a decade ago."
The White House adds that it is "totally illegal to steal and publish tax returns" and is bashing the "dishonest media."
Trump refused to release his tax returns during the campaign, claiming he was under audit.