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Ahead of tonight’s first election debate against Joe Biden, President Trump is reeling from a bombshell New York Times report detailing his chronic financial losses and years of tax avoidance. The investigation found that Trump paid $750 in taxes in 2016 and 2017, considerably less than the average U.S. citizen. In 10 of the previous 15 years, he paid no income tax at all. Other key findings include $1.4 billion in losses for his core businesses for 2008 and 2009 in addition to $421 million in loans he personally guaranteed, most of which are due within four years.
So how do Trump’s tax returns compare with previous U.S. presidents? According to a Washington Post analysis, Barack Obama, Trump’s predecessor, paid nearly $1.8 million in federal income tax in his first year in office, primarily due to royalties from the sale of his books. George W. Bush paid a quarter of a million dollars during his first year in the Oval Office while Clinton paid $62,670 during his first 12 months in office. George H. W. Bush and Ronald Reagan paid $101,382 and $165,202, respectively.
This chart shows federal income tax payments by presidents in the first year of their administration.