The White House may have verified the legitimacy of Donald Trump’s tax returns after they were released by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston, but that didn’t stop Donald Trump from turning around on Wednesday and claiming that they are “FAKE NEWS.”
“Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, “went to his mailbox” and found my tax returns?” Trump screeched on Twitter. “FAKE NEWS!”
Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, "went to his mailbox" and found my tax returns? @NBCNews FAKE NEWS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2017
First off, people have heard of Johnston. He’s been around for quite a while and has even written a book about Donald Trump — a fact that would attract someone who would want to leak some of Trump’s tax returns, especially since it was his tax reporting that earned him his Pulitzer.
The puzzling nature of Donald Trump’s outburst was not lost on the American people, who showed up to mock him for calling something that is 100% fact “FAKE NEWS,” especially when there is every reason to think that Trump leaked the document himself:
— Tony Posnanski (@tonyposnanski) March 15, 2017
— Kevin (@TheKevinDent) March 15, 2017
— #TheResistance (@AynRandPaulRyan) March 15, 2017
— Jeffrey Grubb (@JeffGrubb) March 15, 2017
— Jordan Uhl (@JordanUhl) March 15, 2017
.@realDonaldTrump Fake news, or fake outrage?
— Simon Hedlin (@simonhedlin) March 15, 2017
— MatthewDicks (@MatthewDicks) March 15, 2017
— DJ1028 (@Dj1028Peck) March 15, 2017
— Ned Newhouse (@Ned_Newhouse) March 15, 2017
Donald Trump has a long history of leaking information about himself that, like this partial tax return, would be viewed as positive for him. That fact, combined with the words “CLIENT COPY” stamped across the top of the returns, is a strong indicator that The Donald did an impression of two Russian prostitutes standing on President Obama’s bed in a Moscow hotel – he leaked himself.
Featured image via Getty Images (Pool)/screengrab