David Cay Johnston

David Cay Johnston Bio, Age, Wife, Net Worth and Books  

David Cay Johnston wants to make sure you know what they are doing to your government!. He is an American investigative journalist and author, a special…

David Cay Johnston Biography

David Cay Boyle Johnston is an American investigative journalist and author.  He is also a specialist in economics and tax issues. Furthermore, Cay is the winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Beat Reporting. From (2009 to 2016) he was a Distinguished Visiting Lecturer who taught the tax, property, and regulatory law of the ancient world, at Syracuse University College of Law and the Whitman School of Management.

David Cay Johnston


From July 2011 until September 2012 he was a columnist for Reuters, writing, and producing video commentaries, on worldwide issues of tax, accounting, economics, public finance, and business. Johnston is the board president of Investigative Reporters and Editors. David Cay has also written for Al Jazeera English and America in recent years.

David Cay Johnston Age

David Cay Boyle Johnston is an American investigative journalist and author, a specialist in economics and tax issues, and winner of the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Beat Reporting. Johnston was born on December 24. 1948.

David Cay Johnston Wife | Jennifer Leonard David Cay Johnston

Johnston was born in San Francisco, California, the son of Gretchen E. and Leslie Jules Johnston, a chef. The American native is married to Jennifer Leonard. They live in Brighton, New York, a suburb of Rochester. They have eight children and five grandchildren.

David Cay Johnston Net Worth

David Cay Johnston’s net worth has grown significantly as of 2018. He has an estimated net worth of around 10 million dollars as of 2019. An IRS analysis of 1999 returns found that almost no working farmers owe estate taxes. Estate taxes are not assessed on the first $1.35 million net worth and then rise from 43 to 55 percent above $3 million.

Additionally, most wealthy people use legal maneuvers to reduce their estate taxes to 25 percent “or even as little as zero” for the largest estates. He has been critical of news coverage of the 2008 $700 billion bailouts of Wall Street.

In a letter to American journalist and blogger Jim Romenesko, he wrote, “In covering the proposed $700 billion bailouts of Wall Street don’t repeat the failed lapdog practices that so damaged our reputations in the rush to war in Iraq and the adoption of the Patriot Act. Do not assume that Congress must act instantly, as so many news stories state as if it was an immutable fact.

David Cay Johnston Books

#7 in Consumer Law

#8 in Customer Relations

#8 in Government & Business

#12 in Tax Law

#20 in Economic Policy

Most Popular Books

  • Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Rich–and CheatEverybody Else
  • Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You With the Bill)
  • The Fine Print: How Big Companies Use “Plain English” to Rob You Blind
    The Making of Donald Trump
  • It’s Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump Administration is Doing to America

David Cay Johnston Daily Beast


Johnston’s innovative coverage of tax issues in The New York Times prompted tax policy changes by Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush that Congress valued at more than $250 billion.

He is the immediate past president of the 5,700-member Investigative Reporters & Editors organization. He is also co-founder and chairman emeritus of a lodging management company.

He wrote a best-selling trilogy on the American Economy – Perfectly Legal (taxes), Free Lunch (subsidies) and The Fine Print (monopolies) – as well as a casino industry exposé, Temples of Chance, and edited the anthology Divided: The Perils of Our Growing Inequality. His next book is The Prosperity Tax: A New Federal Tax Code for the 21st Century Economy. He was a consultant on electricity regulation and rare earth for the Netflix series House of Cards.

When he was 18 years old the San Jose Mercury recruited him, hiring him a few months later as a staff writer. His investigations over the next four decades appeared in that paper and The New York Times, as well as in the Detroit Free Press, Los Angeles Times and Philadelphia Inquirer.

He exposed LAPD political spying and brutality; revealed news blackouts and manipulations that forced a six-station broadcast chain off the air; solved an especially vicious murder by confronting the real killer, winning freedom for an innocent man; deconstructed the way foreign agents from South Africa and Taiwan secretly influenced American government policy; and explained the economics of former GE chairman Jack Welch’s retirement perks, prompting Welch to relinquish them.

The Washington Monthly described him as “one of America’s most important journalists,” and the Portland Oregonian called his work the equal of the original muckrakers: Ida Tarbell, Lincoln Steffens, and Upton Sinclair.

David Cay Johnston Trump

The Making of Donald Trump is a 2016 biography of the American businessman, property developer and politician Donald Trump by the American investigative journalist David Cay Johnston. It was published by Melville House Publishing. The book consists of 24 chapters, with an introduction and an epilogue.

It contains details, about The Trump’s family history, personal biography and an account of his business career and marriages. His’s family history, personal biography and an account of his business career and marriages.

Cay first met Trump as a reporter for The Philadelphia Inquirer in June 1988 and likened him to P. T. Barnum. He subsequently reported on Trump for almost 30 years and wrote the book in 27 days. In an interview with The New York Times, he said that Trump had “…seriously damaged his brand” with his presidential campaign and would “follow him for the rest of his life”.

He also felt that Trump was “masterful at understanding the conventions of journalism” and “remarkably agile at doing as he chooses and getting away with it”. The book entered the New York Times hardcover nonfiction list in the fifteenth position and spent four weeks there.

David Cay Johnston Website

So what’s an informed, citizen-focused democracy worth to you?

Please email David below and let him know — in a very few words — if you are interested, how much support you can personally provide and how much you think you can get others to provide to hire a staff to do this vital work.

David, for now, is working pro bono — no salary until we raise enough money to do the kind of job needed to make Washington truly accountable to the people. We will also seek support from foundations and other major funders. If you are interested in supporting tough, fair and fearless journalism that focuses on what the administration and Congress DO, rather than what they say, please send David an email at davidcayjohnston@gmail.com and send a generous tax-deductible donation to,


P.O. Box 10311
Rochester NY 14610

David Cay Johnston Twitter

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