Donald Trump paid $5.3 million in federal taxes in 2018 – by far the most he spent as President. Then the tax bill that he championed changed tax loopholes that he would benefit from in the following years.

With the release of his tax returns by the Ways and Means Committee, a link between Trump’s policy decisions and his finances may have been exposed.

Trump’s landmark 2017 tax law gave tax benefits to the wealthiest earners. The laws included tax breaks directly aimed at real estate developers and millionaires. Trump was able to claim many of those tax breaks throughout his presidency.

The tax law put a cap on state and local deductions that individuals could claim at $10,000. The goal of the provision was to make high-tax (mostly Democratic-led) states less attractive to financial investment. Top earners would have to pay more on local, state and federal taxes.

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Trump claimed he paid $10 million in state and local taxes in 2018 – his deduction was capped at $10,000. The following year, he blessed a plan to create workarounds on that policy, converting personal income taxes into deductible business taxes.

Trump paid $558,000 in federal taxes the following year – just above 10% of what he paid the year prior.

In 2020, he did not pay any federal taxes.

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