- Tabulaw: What Congress Does When it Runs Out of Numbers
Congress recently passed a bill that created section 139D of the tax code. But there was already a 139D. No problem—they just kept the existing one. So there are two section 139Ds. Given my work on codes, this makes my head feel all explodey inside.
- New York Times: G.O.P.’s No-Tax Stance Is Outside Political Mainstream
The concessions that the president is offering to Republican leaders aren't just to the right of what the country wants, they're to the right of what Republicans want. But they're not far enough to the right for Eric Cantor and company, who are willing to cooperate on absolutely nothing. I'm left wondering why somebody unwilling to cooperate would be a member of a legislative body.
- The Atlantic: Sarah Palin Movie Debuts to Empty Theater in Orange County
What if they made a documentary about Sarah Palin, and nobody came? Seriously. Nobody. Just the reporter, all alone in the theater.
- GitHub: nysenatecio/OpenLegislation
The New York Senate's online legislative repository is available on Github. Very impressive.
- Reuters: It pays to be Murdoch. Just ask US gov’t.
Over the past four years, not only has News Corp. not paid income taxes, they've actually gamed the system to collect $4.8B in tax refunds. Murdoch has 152 subsidiaries spread among tax havens throughout the world, and uses them to make *us* pay *him*, via our government.
- The Daily Beast: Debt Crisis Deepens as Eric Cantor, GOP Propose New Cuts
Eric Cantor proposed to the president that college students start making payments on student loans immediately, rather than waiting until graduation. Apparently Cantor doesn't know any actual college students. To his credit, the president responded, "I’m not going to take money from old people and screw students."
Norm Leahy is doing some good work on the Faith and Family Alliance story. He’s got an overview, comments from Sen. Steve Martin, and a response from Larry Sabato. Naturally, all parties involved are pleading ignorance here, but Norm is getting answers and asking the right questions.
The RPV needs two dozen Norms and two dozen Shaun Kenneys—folks who are willing to ask tough questions in the spirit of improving the party.
Well, this is going to be awkward.
- In 2000, Bob McDonnell set up the Faith and Family Alliance, a non-profit that was run by McDonnell’s one-time campaign manager, Robin Vanderwall. (Vanderwall is currently serving a seven-year sentence for child molestation.)
- The Faith and Family Alliance was used to launder money for political purposes, by Vanderwall’s own confession.
- The Faith and Family Alliance got nailed for a dirty mailer in June 2000. Sent out four days before the election, that mailer attacked Eric Cantor, who was running for the nomination for the House, accusing him of being a “millionaire lawyer” who “didn’t pay his own [taxes]. He got caught. He got fined. And he finally was forced to pay $31,527.17 in back taxes.” That along with a nasty anti-Semitic whisper campaign made for a truly nasty campaign against Cantor. The mailer was funded by Sen. Steve Martin (R-Chesterfield), who was running against Cantor.
- Pat Mullins was one of the founders of the Faith and Family Alliance. The same Pat Mullins who is now the head of the Republican Party of Virginia.
That final revelation comes courtesy of Brian McNeill, writing in the Daily Progress on Sunday. Mullins claims to have known nothing about the mailer, and Cantor puts on a brave face about the thing, but it’s tough to believe that they’re being honest. Now, of course, Cantor is the House Republican Whip, the face of the RNC these days. To the extent that there’s any bad blood between Cantor and Mullins & McDonnell, that’s got to be bad for the RPV and McDonnell’s odds. If only we could get Ed Matricardi involved in this somehow.