Friday, October 3, 2008

Fishy Tax Returns from Palin

Okay, it's Friday afternoon, and the McCain campaign has dropped Sarah Palin's tax returns onto its web site.

Even a cursory inspection of the documents suggests there's something fishy going on here. For instance, why was the tax return prepared on the day she accepted the nomination for the vice presidency? Either that's just an extraordinary coincidence, or there's something really fishy going on. It was prepared by H&R Block; the vice presidential nominee of the Republican Party who is the governor of Alaska pays H&R Block to do her taxes the day she accepts the nomination?

Todd Palin had about a $10,000 loss from his "snow machine racing business" in 2007 on income of $17,000. Was this really a business? I only ask because hobby expenses aren't deductible. He claimed 100% business use of his cell phone?

The Palins made noncash charitable contributions, claiming "thrift store value" of $825 for a Dec. 31, 2007, donation to the Salvation Army of Wasilla. It's always good to get a little value out of one's junk, huh?

Tax Prof Blog observes:
It does not appear that Gov. Palin reported as income the per diem reimbursement she received for travel, meals, and lodging expenses as governor of Alaska. Her 2007 W-2 reports $107,987 of income as governor.
Per Alaska Statute Section 39.20.010, the governor's salary is set at $125,000 per year. What's up with that?

A reader at Tax Prof Blog made the following comment:
the Joint Committee on Taxation, after examining the tax returns for President Richard Nixon, concluded that Mr. Nixon should have included the value of air travel on government jets for his family members as part of his gross income.

Per Diem is not the only issue. Flying Todd and the brood around and getting reimbursed for it without declaring it as income is still questionable.
Interestingly, it looks like Palins elected to not designate $3 to the Presidential public financing system in either 2006 or 2007. It's especially interesting given that McCain's campaign is living off of that money right now.


Post a Comment