Mike Pence Defends Donald Trump’s Stance on Tax Returns in VP Debate

GOP running mate says real-estate mogul used the tax code “the way he was supposed to”

Last Updated: October 4, 2016 @ 6:59 PM

It took about 20 minutes for Donald Trump’s 1995 tax return to pop up during the first and only vice presidential debate on Tuesday. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence defended Trump saying he used the tax code “brilliantly” to avoid paying federal income taxes for years.

The returns “show that he faced some pretty tough times 20 years ago,” Pence told moderator Elaine Quijano. “But he used the tax code just the way it’s supposed to be used and he did it brilliantly.”

Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine then interrupted, asking Pence: “How do you know that?”

Pence responded that Trump created lots of jobs and a great business.

After Kaine slammed Trump for bragging that he was “smart” for not paying taxes during the presidential debate last week, Pence asked him: “Senator, you don’t take all the deductions you’re entitled to?” adding that Trump had released “over 100 pages of financial disclosure.”

Kaine had the last word saying that, “Donald Trump must show Americans his tax returns to show that he’s qualified to be president.”

On Saturday, The New York Times published a bombshell report that included Donald Trump’s 1995 tax records, suggesting the GOP nominee lost a whopping $916 million. The loss would have allowed him to legally avoid paying any federal income taxes for up to 18 years.

Watch the video below.