by John Gibson
Surely you have noticed the media barking like a caged dog, demanding Donald Trump's taxes.
It's been going on for months and months. The media snarling canines even carried on after the election, which proved the voters really didn't care about Trump's taxes.
So last night Rachel Maddow claimed she had Trump's taxes and would reveal all the dirt on her MSNBC program. Turns out she had more hype than Trump taxes.
For starters, Maddow didn't obtain the Trump tax returns. A reporter named David Cay Johnston from DCReport.org was the one who got the two pages, not Maddow. But he gave the material to her, and she milked it for all it was worth.
The problem for her and other bloodhounds on Trump's trail is that the 2005 tax returns show he paid about 25% on $150 million income.
Why is that a problem? Because it shows he paid a very reasonable amount of tax and put the lie to the media notion that Trump pays zero taxes.
Rachel Maddow took a bunch of grief online for her hype-athon.
But liberal commenters later dug themselves an even deeper hole. Chris Ciliza at the Trump hating Washington Post jumped on the story to declare it a "nothing burger".
Why was the story a "nothing-burger"? Because it didn't nail Trump to a cross. Because it disappointed media hounds who wanted to show they have been right all along that Trump pays zero or close to it in taxes.
A story that showed he paid more tax that President Obama's last filing (Trump's 25% versus Obama's 18.7%) deflating for the media. A "nothing-burger" story means it falls short, it is empty, it is a letdown.
Doesn't that tell you everything you need to know about this media? They want to show he's a tax cheat. When his returns show he is not, their attitude is "nothing here, move along."
No. The story is he is NOT a tax cheat. As Don Lemon bleated on CNN: "How is this NOT good for Donald Trump?"
The big media--the New York Times and the Washington Post--did find something to complain about: $31 million of the tax Trump paid was because of a provision of the tax code called the Alternative Minimum Tax, which tacks on extra if the taxpayer falls below a certain amount of tax. Both papers reported with much tongue clucking that Trump wants to eliminate the AMT.
But that was merely an attempt to salvage a criticism from an otherwise positive story for Trump. The frowny faces on the media that they have to report to the public that Donald Trump paid a higher tax rate than their sainted hero, former President Obama, tells you all you need to know about the media.
News about Trump must be bad. If it's not, that's even worse.