WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 21, 2022
What Mika and Lawrence said: In 2016, when he ran for the White House, was Donald J. Trump being audited by the IRS?
Unless the New York Times was crazily wrong in its ballyhooed reporting, yes—he actually was.
This morning, we showed you excerpts from the Times' gigantic review of Trump's tax and audit history—an extremely lengthy front-page report which appeared in September 2020.
The Times reported that Trump had been under audit for years as of 2016. He could have released his tax returns had he wanted to, but he was under a yearslong audit—or so the New York Times said.
(In a brand-new report this morning, the AP cited that Times report.)
That brings us to the way Morning Joe started this morning. The program opened with videotape of Candidate Trump, on four separate occasions in 2016, saying he was being audited.
Mika then jumped in with this:
BRZEZINSKI (12/21/22): Ahhh, no. He was not under audit. He was lying. That was Donald Trump, lying repeatedly...
"He was not under audit," she said. A bit later, she said what's shown below. We're forced to put you on an irony alert:
BRZEZINSKI: Our other top story this morning shows something that a lot of folks have been waiting for, for a long time.
It proves that Hillary—Hillary Clinton—was right all along. Nancy Pelosi was right all along. Chuck Schumer was right all along. The Democrats were right all along.
Reporting from the New York Times was right all along. The Washington Post too was 100% correct all along.
Donald Trump was not under audit. Donald Trump was lying. He was desperate to hide the truth from Americans, that truth that far from being a shrewd businessman, he was in fact the biggest loser out of the 300 million Americans who filed their taxes with the IRS.
The man lost more money than any other American. At a time he was writing The Art of the Deal, this was happening.
Thanks to the Internet Archive, you can watch the entire show.
In this second iteration, Mika didn't make a careful attempt to define the time frame to which she was referring. She did stumble into one of the absurd contradictions in which people of her ilk are inclined to traffic.
We refer to the pleasing tale in which scripted blue tribe pundits simultaneously peddle these dueling points:
Point 1: Donald J. Trump lost tons of money almost every year.
Point 2: Donald J. Trump didn't pay any federal income tax in quite a few recent years.
Mika posted data showing that Trump had lost oodles of money in four out of six recent years. She then marveled at the fact that he had paid little or no income tax during those mega-loser years—years in which he seemed to have no reportable income on which to pay income taxes!
Donald J. Trump is massively disordered. That said, it's important that you understand the truth about our "cable news" TV stars too.
Under current arrangements, such people are wed to Storyline. They're rarely familiar with basic facts. They're rarely encumbered by elementary logic.
They simply recite the standard, tribally pleasing points derived from Storyline. So it went at the start of this morning's show, when Mika insisted that Donald J. Trump wasn't under audit back in 2016.
"Reporting from the New York Times was right all along," she haplessly said. Irony alert! It was the New York Times which broke the news that Trump had been under audit!
In fairness to Mika, Lawrence said the same darn thing last night at the start of his show. As we showed you this morning, here's what Lawrence said:
O'DONNELL (12/20/22): You will recall that Donald Trump began telling the lie during his first presidential campaign that he could not release his tax returns because they were being audited. As I said at the time, Donald Trump offered absolutely no proof that his tax returns were being audited...
As of tonight, there is no evidence of Donald Trump's tax returns ever having been audited.
It's true! In 2016, there was no proof that Trump was being audited.
Four years later, the New York Times reported that he had been under a lengthy, yearslong audit. Even now, two years after that, Lawrence doesn't seem to have heard.
This sort of thing goes on and on, then on and on and on. Donald J. Trump is severely disordered, but these corporate-selected stumblebums are a basket of nutcases too.
Such TV stars are paid millions of dollars to feed us the stories we love. This is an imitation of life and an utterly stupid game.
Ignatius and Savage played along too. This is the business they've chosen!