Joe Biden’s campaign seized on a fresh line of attack on the eve of the Democratic presidential nominee’s first debate with President Donald Trump, accusing the Republican incumbent of gaming the system to avoid paying his fair share of taxes.
Trump, a self-proclaimed billionaire who is seeking reelection in the Nov. 3 vote, paid only $750 in federal income taxes in both 2016 and 2017, after years of reporting heavy losses from his businesses to offset hundreds of millions of dollars in income, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing tax-return data.
The Times also reported that Trump paid no federal income tax in 10 of the previous 15 years through 2017, despite receiving $427.4 million through 2018 from his reality television program and other endorsement and licensing deals.
Jared Bernstein, one of Biden’s top economic advisers, said the report highlighted the need to simplify the tax code and make people like Trump pay their fair share.
“The vast majority of us pay taxes and get on with life. But the richer you are, the more tax lawyers you employ, the more complex you can make your holdings – all of this can, as the piece shows reduce your tax liability to zero,” Bernstein said on Twitter.