Rudy Giuliani says Donald Trump is a "genius" if he avoided federal income taxes, responding to a New York Times report that the candidate claimed a nearly $1 billion loss in 1995 that would have eliminated his federal tax burden for up to 18 years, reports the AP. Giuliani told NBC's Meet the Press on Sunday that if Trump hadn't used his business losses to his advantage on his taxes, he would have been sued by any business partners and shareholders. "The reality is he's a genius," said Giuliani. When asked whether such a loophole was fair, Giuliani noted that many Americans have such low incomes that they aren't required to pay federal income taxes either. "A lot of the people that are poor take advantage of loopholes and pay no taxes. Those are loopholes also," he said. Other reactions:
- Chris Christie said the report is a "very good story" for Trump. The New Jersey governor said on Fox News Sunday that the Times story showcases "the genius of Donald Trump" because he has said he'd follow the law, would ease tax policy on working people, and knows tax policy better than anyone.
- Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill retorted that Trump's nearly $916 million loss "represents real pain to many people who never got paid."
- Bernie Sanders says the report underscores how the wealthy have manipulated the political system at the expense of the middle class. "That is why people are angry and want real change in this country."
The New York Times
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