Want to See Just How Tiny Trump’s $750 Tax Payment Really Is? Watch This Video.

Mother Jones illustration; Sarah Silbiger/CNP via Zuma

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The revelation shouldn’t really be that much of a surprise: The man who proudly crows on national television that not paying taxes makes him “smart” has paid little-to-no federal income tax for quite some time. But it still felt like a gut punch—particularly that one very specific detail, that the president paid exactly $750 two years in a row. As my colleague Inae Oh wrote:

Amid the avalanche of takeaways, somehow the $750 figure has gained special power as a convenient shorthand for exactly how corrupt this president is. For many, including myself, it landed sharply after endless exposure to the scandals and abominations that flow daily from Trump’s White House. The precision of this number was strangely even more appalling than the investigation’s other striking revelation that Trump paid no federal income taxes at all in ten of the previous 15 years.

That’s because average Americans simply know what $750 looks like. Maybe it’s substantially less than what you’ve been paying in taxes as an entry-level journalist fresh out of college with significant loans. It might be the exact amount you’re shelling out for a tax adviser to correct a mistake made during the same year you earned a $31,000 salary. It’s certainly cheaper than the cheapest rent I ever paid to live in New York—$800—and that was while still attending college and racking up student debt in 2009.

I mean, $750 seems an impossibly small tax bill for someone who claims hundreds of millions of dollars in yearly income. But just how small?

In the past several months, we’ve made animations to visualize wildly large and hard-to-comprehend numbers that crop up in the news. But this time, we’re flipping that around to show you exactly how tiny Trump’s 2016 federal income tax payment is. How does it compare to an average American household in 2016? Or the previous occupant of the White House? Watch our animated guide:

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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