Donald Trump has made it a habit to lie about many things this election cycle. On the night of the first debate, he was honest about something for once (so rare!) and admitted he does not pay federal income taxes. Not just once, but multiple times in a row while Hillary pointed out exactly what it was that he was confessing to. He even went so far as to say he feels “smart” about it, which might not be the most intelligent thing to say when you are claiming on national television that you have been neglecting to pay taxes for who knows how many years.
The lead up to the debate moment included Trump once again rambling about being audited, this time claiming he’s been audited for almost 15 years straight, and that he would “go against his lawyers wishes” and release his tax records if Hillary releases her emails. Of course, there is no bar on releasing tax returns that are under audit, but just try telling Trump and his “lawyers” that and see if it makes a difference. Hillary calls him out on that fact and posits that he might be a shady businessman (probable), that he doesn’t give as much to charity (also probable), or that he isn’t as rich as he says he is (almost a definite), then proceeds to lay out the facts about the Trump tax history we do have knowledge about.
Hillary points out that those taxes would go to the troops and veterans, things Trump and the GOP include in their platform, as well as things like schools and health initiatives. Instead of defending himself intelligently, Trump admits again that if he did pay taxes they would be squandered on “Hillary’s ideas” as well. What those ideas are, he doesn’t say. Nor does he reasonably detail what reports he is referencing to support his points, why specifically the country being in debt is bad (it isn’t), and why he thinks LaGuardia Airport is like that of a third world country (probably the one thing he’s said tonight that is even remotely near the “accuracy” ballpark).
Clinton then goes on to pick apart his defense agains releasing his taxes, including laying out the difference between a financial disclosure statement and an actual tax return. Not to mention the lesson she gives the audience about his history of business mistakes and what that could mean for the government. In a moment that is not shocking at all, Trump claims he has a “tremendous” business and income. Well that’s good, it;s not like anybody in the country wants to see proof of that claim or anything. Here’s a longer clip of Trump’s odd tax statement.