Whatever populist mask Trump wears, his financial arrangements and regressive economic plan show his true elitist colours

In 1995, Donald Trump and I paid the same amount in taxes to the IRS. Trump, at that point, owned a slew of multimillion-dollar buildings bearing his name and his gold-plated brand, and claimed to have had a net worth of $2bn. I was learning what colours were while trying to kick an addiction to thumb-sucking.

Documents released to the New York Times reveal that the Republican presidential candidate was able to cash in on $916m in debt to shirk federal taxes that year, and potentially payments on all other taxable income over the next 18. This raises several questions about Trump’s taxes: what his returns have looked like since 1995; where his personal net worth stands now; and the extent of his debts.

Last year, Trump chided ‘people that are making a tremendous amount of money and paying virtually no tax’

Related: Trump campaign faces biggest crisis yet after tax documents published

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