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Good Grief

The A.P. reports:

Ron Kirk, nominated as U.S. Trade Representative in the Obama administration, owes an estimated $10,000 in back taxes from earlier in the decade and has agreed to make his payments, the Senate Finance Committee said Monday.

The committee said the taxes arise from Kirk’s handling of speaking fees that he donated to his alma mater, and for his deduction of the full cost of season tickets to the Dallas Mavericks professional basketball team.

Apparently there is a shortage of qualified Democrats who have paid their taxes. Query whether a better solution to the Obama budgetary revenue shortfall would be an en masse nomination of Obama’s wealthy donors to top spots. That alone would stand to bring in millions to the federal coffers.

But the issue remains for senators: is tax cheating simply the new norm for cabinet nominees? All tax cheats can breathe easy, I suppose, if not paying your taxes is no longer a barrier to high office. Well, provided the majority party in the Senate matches the party in the White House. Otherwise, it’s an outrage.


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