The hosts of “Fox & Friends” defended and even seemed to celebrate President Donald Trump’s business losses on Wednesday morning, a day after The New York Times published 10 years of his tax information.
According to the 1985-to-1994 financial data obtained by the Times, Trump racked up nearly $1.2 billion in business losses over the course of the decade ― a stark contrast to how he was publicly depicting himself during that same period of time.
In response to this, co-host Brian Kilmeade said that Trump “lost a lot of money over the course of 10 years, if you consider a billion dollars a lot of money,” and from that deduced that the president was a “bold businessman.” Kilmeade then insisted there is “nothing about this article that should surprise anybody.”
“I can’t imagine having that much money, spending that much money and being in debt. For him, it makes sense,” Kilmeade said. “For Donald Trump, he says, ‘I got some money but I want to really expand my empire. I want to take chances.’ That’s what he has done through his entire life.”
While listing the various properties that Trump has purchased over the years, Kilmeade asked, “What do people not understand about he’s a little bit different than most people?”
Co-host Ainsley Earhardt echoed Kilmeade’s sentiments, calling the Times report “interesting” but insisting that it won’t sway anyone at the polls because few can “fathom that kind of money.”
She also remarked that, “wow, it’s pretty impressive, all the things he’s done in his life. It’s beyond what most of us could ever achieve.”
Co-host Steve Doocy then chimed in to make it clear that the Times article does not say that Trump broke the law.
“I think the suggestion is that he used the tax laws to his benefit,” said Doocy.
The president himself tweeted Wednesday morning to call the Times report a “Fake News hit job.” He claimed that back then, “almost all real estate developers” wanted to show losses for tax purposes and renegotiate with banks and that it was “sport.”
“Real estate developers in the 1980’s & 1990’s, more than 30 years ago, were entitled to massive write offs and depreciation which would, if one was actively building, show losses and tax losses in almost all cases. Much was non monetary. Sometimes considered ‘tax shelter,’ ......,” he said in one tweet.
Trump added in his next post: “...you would get it by building, or even buying. You always wanted to show losses for tax purposes....almost all real estate developers did - and often re-negotiate with banks, it was sport. Additionally, the very old information put out is a highly inaccurate Fake News hit job!”