Donald Trump Shrugs Off Decades of Tax Fraud

Globe Photos/ZUMAPRESS

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Yesterday the New York Times reported that the Trump family, including Donald Trump, had engaged for years in both outright tax fraud and an endless string of tax scammery that might or might not edge over into fraud. They also reported that far from being a self-made billionaire, Trump had received nearly half a billion dollars from his father over the years. Today, Trump responded:

That’s it. Donald Trump, who brags constantly about graduating from Wharton, pretended that adjusting for inflation was some kind of rare wizardry and then blew off the whole thing. He didn’t even bother denying any of the charges in the article, all of which were based on brand new documentary evidence. Neither did his press secretary:

Asked to identify what in the article was incorrect, she said, “I won’t go through every line of a very boring 14,000-word story.” Instead, she said the article demonstrated that Mr. Trump’s father believed in him. “One thing the article did get right is it showed that the president’s father actually had a great deal of confidence in him,” she said. “In fact, the president brought his father into a lot of deals and made a lot of money together.”

Why does Trump think he can get away with this? It’s easy: this is precisely the kind of story that the press will forget almost instantly. It’s an exclusive to the New York Times, which spent over a year on it, and there’s very little prospect of following it up. There won’t be new documents dropped every few days. There aren’t people to interview to advance the story. There aren’t politicians with axes to grind who will start up investigations and keep generating news. As long as Trump himself ignores it, there’s very little the Times can do to keep this story in the public eye day after day.

In a world where Trump generates news at will almost daily, it’s doomed unless something miraculous happens to keep it going. Unfortunately, Democrats are too busy with other stuff and Republicans couldn’t care less if Trump is a crook. But who knows? Maybe the Times has a follow-up or two that they plan to drop in a few days.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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