MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow thought she had a major scoop on Tuesday. She thought she was about to broadcast the show of her life, the show that would etch her name in broadcasting history, the show that would make her a household name and destroy Donald Trump’s presidency at the same time. Instead, Maddow ended up with egg on her face, getting scooped by other agencies and reinforcing the idea that Donald Trump is a respectable businessman and a patriotic American.
A few hours before her show on Tuesday Maddow teased liberals by tweeting out that she had gotten hold of Trump’s tax returns and would be revealing them on her show…
BREAKING: We've got Trump tax returns. Tonight, 9pm ET. MSNBC.
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) March 14, 2017
What we've got is from 2005… the President's 1040 form… details to come tonight 9PM ET, MSNBC.
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) March 15, 2017
Of course, her fans quickly went insane with hope and expectation.
One of America's "richest" said he doesn't pay taxes
"…because I'm smart"
…became the president. pic.twitter.com/sVexPsxmzI
— AJ Joshi Ⓥ (@AJ) March 15, 2017
– thank you
— ROSIE (@Rosie) March 15, 2017
— Charles Johnson (@Green_Footballs) March 14, 2017
But her fans were getting their hopes up for no reason because shortly before her show most of the American news media also got copies of Trump’s 2005 tax returns, rendering her big reveal moot. Though it wasn’t all for naught because we got to watch Rachel Maddow disappoint millions of liberals when she finally revealed that President Trump had paid a much higher tax rate than they could have imagined.
And conservatives laughed…
when you think trump is gonna get caught for not paying taxes, then it turns out he paid 38 million😂😂 where are the updates now?
— Thomas reed (@Thonasreed) March 15, 2017
Trump paid $38M in 2015. Warren Buffett paid $1.84M in 2015, so Trump paid more in 1 yr than Buffett has paid in 25.
— JD Devero (@moonskoobie) March 15, 2017
Some folks even called her big reveal… “Fake News”!
I was wrong. I was what we in the business call "fake news"https://t.co/GZevAiI2uO
— matt lurrie 🔥 (@mattlurrie) March 15, 2017
Sadly, for Maddow, in the hour or so before her big reveal was set to happen the White House decided to reveal President Trump’s 2005 tax return for themselves and several media outlets, including CNN ran with the story first.
The White House said Tuesday President Donald Trump earned more than $150 million in income and paid $38 million in taxes even after taking into account large scale depreciation for construction in response to questions about the coming publication of his 2005 return.
The $38 million was in addition to “paying tens of millions of dollars in other taxes such as sales and excise taxes and employment taxes,” a White House official said ahead of an anticipated MSNBC news report about the returns.
And the White House took the opportunity to wonder if Maddow had broken the law to get the return, or had simply encouraged someone else to break the law. “You know you are desperate for ratings when you are willing to violate the law to push a story about two pages of tax returns from over a decade ago,” a White House official said.
— David Shepardson (@davidshepardson) March 15, 2017
Maddow’s colleagues in the media quickly realized that the big build up for her show was nothing to get excited about and that Maddow way oversold her exclusive “scoop.” (Which she got scooped on.) And they mocked her mercilessly for it…
Ok, now to @TuckerCarlson who already read the returns, reported it, and interrogated a professor from a small college into tears over it
— GregGutfeld (@greggutfeld) March 15, 2017
Rachel Maddow and MSNBC https://t.co/AaLVfZUSYv
— #ZeroDarkThirty-23 (@RTSportsTalk) March 15, 2017
Rachel Maddow’s career committed suicide live on national TV tonight https://t.co/nYMKjC8PDf
— Legal Insurrection (@LegInsurrection) March 15, 2017
But, really… it gets worse, as CNN’s favorite liberal pundit Van Jones explains.
“Here’s the reality. If all we tonight is that Donald Trump paid $38 million to America’s government, that’s a good night for Donald Trump. I’m sorry. I was really hoping and praying that it would show that not only did he pay no taxes but he charged the government and got money back, but there’s nothing I could get excited about here.”
— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) March 15, 2017
Indeed, in 2005, President Trump actually paid a much higher tax rate than most people in his income group.
Trump paid $38 million in taxes on $150 million of reported income that year, for an effective average tax rate of 25.3 percent.
But that year, those among the top 0.1 percent of taxpayers had an average tax rate of 22.48 percent, according to data from the Tax Foundation…
In fact, he paid more than others with his income.
You can watch every excruciating moment of Maddow’s big build up and reveal (of nothing but Trump’s legal and normal tax returns) below: