Last night, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow revealed Donald Trump’s 2005 tax returns on her television show. As many of us guessed, there was absolutely nothing unusual in Trump’s returns. However, Maddow got some bad news today when she learned she had actually broken the law when she showed the tax return to her audience.
The Hill reported that disclosing a taxpayer’s information without consent is illegal, and could result in the perpetrator being sent to prison for up to five years.
“The unauthorized release or publishing of federal tax returns is a criminal offense, punishable by a fine of up to $5,000 and up to five years in jail,” Syracuse.com reported. “Maddow, however, argued that MSNBC was exercising its First Amendment right to publish information in the public interest.”
The White House released a statement making it clear that Trump did not give his consent and that Maddow had indeed broken 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,” the statement read. “Despite this substantial income figure and tax paid, it is totally illegal to steal and publish tax returns. The dishonest media can continue to make this part of their agenda, while the President will focus on his, which includes tax reform that will benefit all Americans.”
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