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Watch: Donald Trump has had a rough 24 hours courtesy of New York

The New York Times claims the mogul hasn’t paid tax “in decades”, while Saturday Night Live’s take on the presidential debate was less than flattering to Trump to put it mildly.

trump Alec Baldwin, taking to his new role as Donald Trump with gusto Source: Youtube

DONALD TRUMP DECLARED a $916 million (€815 million) loss on his 1995 income tax return, allowing him to legally avoid paying taxes for decades, The New York Times has claimed.

The sensitive issue is important because Trump has refused to release his tax records, as US presidential candidates customarily do in the interest of transparency.

Trump’s previously undisclosed 1995 tax records show “the extraordinary tax benefits” that the billionaire “derived from the financial wreckage he left behind in the early 1990s through mismanagement of three Atlantic City casinos, his ill-fated foray into the airline business, and his ill-timed purchase of the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan,” The Times reports.

While Trump’s taxable income in the following years is unknown, “a $916 million loss in 1995 would have been large enough to wipe out more than $50 million (€44 million) a year in taxable income over 18 years,” the report said.

The Trump campaign issued a statement in response that did not specifically address the $916 million loss.

“Mr. Trump is a highly-skilled businessman who has a fiduciary responsibility to his business, his family and his employees to pay no more tax than legally required,” the statement said.

That being said, Mr. Trump has paid hundreds of millions of dollars in property taxes, sales and excise taxes, real estate taxes, city taxes, state taxes, employee taxes and federal taxes.

The campaign attacked The Times as “an extension of the Clinton Campaign, the Democratic Party and their global special interests”.

Skewered

Source: Saturday Night Live/YouTube

The controversy surrounding Trump’s taxes wasn’t the only headlines the mogul has been creating in New York this morning, although he had little to do with events on Saturday Night Live.

The long-running American comedy staple began its new season last night by skewering the first presidential debate from last week, with actor Alec Baldwin taking on the role of Trump.

Baldwin’s take on Trump is less than flattering, with the actor sniffing and spouting off words like “yuuge” and “Ji-na” in a parody of Trump’s performance at last week’s debate.

Sporting wavy blonde hair, an orange spray-tan and a lip-puckering scowl, Baldwin skewered the Republican presidential candidate’s debate performance at Monday at Hofstra University.

“Our jobs are fleeing this country. They’re going to Mexico, they’re going to Ji-na. I’d stop that. If Hillary knew how she would have done it already, end of story. I won the debate, I stayed calm just like I promised, and it is over. Good night, Hofstra,” Baldwin’s Trump said, as he attempted to leave.

Clinton – portrayed by SNL regular Kate McKinnon – walked onstage aided by a cane, a nod to her recent bout with pneumonia.

McKinnon’s Clinton said that Trump’s tax plan is: “not just trickle-down economics, it’s – I don’t know, I guess if I had to call it something off the top of the old dome, with no prep whatsoever, I don’t know, I guess I’d call it Trumped-up, trickle-down economics.”

Clinton, who spent days preparing for the debate, has a reputation of being a stiff and scripted politician.

Judgement

After claiming to have “the best judgement. And the best temperament,” Baldwin’s Trump blamed Clinton and President Barack Obama for tampering with his microphone.

The reaction? “I think I’m going to be president,” McKinnon smiled.

Also mocked: Trump’s repeated interruptions, his claim that climate change is a Chinese hoax and Clinton’s use of 1996 Miss Universe Alicia Machado as “a strong, beautiful, political prop”.

Machado claims that Trump – who at the time owned the beauty pageant – mocked her as “Miss Piggy” when she gained weight, and called her “Miss Housekeeper” because of her Latina heritage.

SNL has a history of mocking politicians going back to Gerald Ford in the 1970s, portrayed by Chevy Chase as a clumsy bumbler after the president once tripped and fell down an airplane staircase.

A notable recent impersonation was Tina Fey, who was merciless as she portrayed Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin in 2008 as clueless and unprepared.

Additional reporting Cianan Brennan

© – AFP, 2016

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