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Obama's HHS Secretary Nominee Faces Tax Questions Over Car and Driver

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by Rogah, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. Rogah

    Rogah Well-Known Member

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    I find it particularly galling when the people who control how much I have to pay in taxes don't pay necessary taxes themselves. And note to Mr. Daschle... like I said about the treasury secretary, don't insult my intelligence by pretending you "didn't know" you had to pay taxes on this benefit. (Of course, I know that that is exactly what he will do).

    http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2009/01/bumps-in-the-ro.html

    Bumps in the Road: Obama's HHS Secretary Nominee Faces Tax Questions Over Car and Driver

    ABC News has learned that the nomination of former Senator Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-SD, to be President Obama's Secretary of Health and Human Services has hit a traffic snarl on its way through the Senate Finance Committee.

    The controversy deals with a car and driver lent to Mr. Daschle by a wealthy Democratic friend, a chauffer service the former Senator used for years without declaring their use on his taxes.

    During the vetting process to become HHS Secretary, Mr. Daschle corrected the tax violation, voluntarily paying $101,943 in back taxes plus interest, working with his accountant to amend his tax returns for 2005 through 2007.
  2. sacase

    sacase Well-Known Member

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    http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2009/01/bumps-in-the-ro.html

    January 30, 2009 6:29 PM
    ABC News has learned that the nomination of former Senator Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., to be President Obama's Secretary of Health and Human Services has hit a traffic snarl on its way through the Senate Finance Committee.
    The controversy deals with a car and driver lent to Daschle by a wealthy Democratic friend, a chauffeur service the former senator used for years without declaring it on his taxes.
    It remains an open question as to whether this is a "speed bump," as a Democratic Senate ally of Daschle put it, or something more damaging.
    After being defeated in his 2004 re-election campaign to the Senate, Daschle in 2005 became a consultant and chairman of the Executive Advisory Board at InterMedia Advisors.
    Based in New York City, InterMedia Advisors is a private equity firm founded in part by longtime Daschle friend and Democratic fundraiserLeo Hindery, the former president of the YES network (the Yankees' and Devils' broadcast network).
    That same year he began his professional relationship with InterMedia 2005, Daschle began using the services of Hindery's car and driver.
    The Cadillac and driver were never part of Daschle's official compensation package at InterMedia but Mr. Daschle -- who as Senate majority leader enjoyed the use of a car and driver at taxpayer expense -- didn't declare their services on his income taxes, as tax laws require.
    During the vetting process to become HHS secretary, Daschle corrected the tax violation, voluntarily paying $101,943 in back taxes plus interest, working with his accountant to amend his tax returns for 2005 through 2007.
    (Mr. Daschle reimbursed the IRS $31,462 in taxes and interest for tax year 2005; $35,546 for 2006; and $34,935, a Daschle spokesperson said, adding that Daschle had asked his accountant to look into the tax implications of the car and driver five months before Mr. Obama won the presidency.)
    The chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., has called his colleagues for a private meeting at 5 p.m. ET Monday to discuss these complications surrounding Daschle's nomination.
    The Daschle spokesperson told ABC News that the senator, facing questions from the committee, has said "he deeply regretted his mistake. When he realized it was a mistake he corrected it rapidly."
    This is the second Cabinet nominee of President Obama's to face questions of tax malfeasance. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner paid more than $34,000 in taxes during his vetting process for income earned at the International Monetary Fund. Earlier, Commerce Secretary nominee Bill Richardson withdrew his name from consideration after reports of a federal investigation involving whether his office engaged in pay to play, a charge Richardson denied.
    The spokesperson said, by way of explaining how it was this happened: "In 2005, Sen. Daschle's close friend Leo Hindery, who lives in New York, offered him the use of a car and driver in Washington when he was not using it. That same year, they began a formal business relationship where he was an independent consultant and chairman of the external advisory board to InterMedia Advisors. The car was not provided as part of his compensation. So it never occurred to him that it should be considered income. The senator simply and probably naively considered its use a generous offer by a longtime friend."
    Neither the White House nor businessman Leo Hindery had any comment. Daschle has personally refrained from commenting.
    Daschle came before the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee for a hearing on Jan. 8, 2009, and it was a veritable love-in, with the respected former colleague praised to the high heavens.
    But staffers at the Senate Finance Committee are generally a little more exacting -- witness the stormy weather faced by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, for his back-tax snafus -- and they have been delving into the issue and exploring all the ramifications before holding a committee vote on his nomination.
    The Daschle spokesperson insisted that the senator is the one who should get credit for discovering, fixing and disclosing the tax issue.
    "In June 2008, Sen. Daschle mentioned the use of the car to his personal accountant and asked him if there were any potential tax consequences," the spokesperson said. "His accountant said that there could be tax consequences and said he was going to fix them as part of Daschle's 2008 filing. So when he got down to vetting, Sen. Daschle decided to amend his returns for 2005, 2006 and 2007, and he paid all the taxes. At the urging of Daschle, the accountant was very conservative in his estimates."
    Daschle has long been one of President Obama's closest advisers, so it was no surprise when the mild-mannered pol was named Obama's nominee to be HHS Secretary shortly after Obama won election; his official nomination came Dec. 11, 2008.
    Should Daschle have difficulty being confirmed -- a prospect that seems unlikely given the benefit of the doubt senators frequently extend to one another, not to mention the Senate's Democratic majority -- he doesn't have to worry about finding another job in the administration, since President Obama has also appointed him to serve as director of the new White House Office on Health Reform
    ----------------------------------

    Looks to me like the only time Dems want to pay their taxes is when they are about to get a position of power. Otherwise, screw taxes, the rest of America can pay their fair share
  3. ThaBigP

    ThaBigP New Member

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    Is there ANYBODY is this damned governenment that pays their taxes? More to the point, is there ANYBODY for whom not paying taxes would prevent them from holding official office?

    Oh, that's right. Just be a Republican and try getting away with not paying your taxes...
  4. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    Well this is not a good day to spring this news on me. I just finished my taxes this afternoon and when I see how much of my money they are forcing me to spread around to people who didn't earn it, it just ticks me off.

    And to find out that this knuckle head now has tax issues, man.

    :angry:
  5. JBond

    JBond Well-Known Member

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    This is getting ridiculous. Obama really needs to get his **** together. The cabinet he wanted is an absolute joke. We knew he had horrendous judgement before he was elected. We knew they quality of people he likes to surround himself with. I just thought by this point he would catch on. He is the President now. He needs to learn how to act like it.
  6. JBond

    JBond Well-Known Member

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    Rogah poster this an hour ago. I'm glad some other are seeing it though. Obama certainly has some keen judgement.
  7. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    I swear he has monkeys juggling knives in his head.
  8. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Bad Santa Staff Member

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    You need to send some of that money to me because it is the patriotic thing to do...and I know you are a patriot.
  9. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    I wouldn't want to break that entrepreneurial spirit.
  10. CowboyWay

    CowboyWay If Coach would have put me in, we'd a won State

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    LOL. People talking about Obama's judgement being horrible, and how bad his cabinet is, yet they wouldn't blast Bush???

    OMG. Denile ain't just a river in Egypt. LOL
  11. bbgun

    bbgun Benched

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    Let’s see, Hillary, Tim Geithner, Bill Richardson, Tom Daschle …

    And they said Sarah Palin was not vetted.
  12. trickblue

    trickblue Old Testament... Zone Supporter

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    I think the interesting thing is that there is little outrage over this...

    The tide is turning and the outrage expressed against Bush and Cheney will somehow fall by the wayside...

    Obama, thus far, has put 2 tax dodgers into office...

    The fact that they are defended is amazing to me...

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