Ken's Project Blog

February 13, 2011

CREW fights Frugal Lawmakers

Filed under: In The News,Politics — Ken @ 11:35 am

Congressman Quigley Makes His Bed (©chicagotribune.com)


Over at The Blaze they have a story on a group CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington) that has a problem with lawmakers that choose to sleep in their offices. I’m confused by this statement:

“As living in a House office clearly is not a condition of serving in Congress, members must pay taxes for imputed income based on the fair market value of their lodging,”

If a congressman owns a house in, for example, Illinois, and moves to Washington D.C. to serve in government, it has recently been proven at the state supreme court level that that politician is still a resident of (in this case) Illinois. If they are a resident of Illinois, why should they have to also pay taxes for temporary housing in D.C.?

The only taxes I’m aware of that are based on the “value of the lodging” are property taxes, and those are the responsibility of the land owner, not the occupant.

I was under the impression that serving in Congress was supposed to be a part-time occupation, is this group now suggesting that as a condition of serving in Congress adequate housing must be arranged? DOes this mean low-income candidates need not run? (A $174,000/year salary is a lot, but is it two houses worth of income?)

“As living in a House office clearly is not a condition of serving in Congress, members must pay taxes for imputed income based on the fair market value of their lodging,”

Is CREW arguing that politicians “own” their offices, hence they owe taxes on them? That would explain many reactions after last year’s upsets in the 2010 elections…

Sources:

citizensforethics.org: The Capital is not a Frat House
The Blaze: Government Ethics Group Knocks Thrifty Lawmakers for Sleeping in Their Capitol Hill Offices

The Washington Post: Rahm Emanuel ruled eligible for Chicago mayoral race

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1 Comment »

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Ken Hansen, Ken Hansen. Ken Hansen said: CREW fights Frugal Lawmakers http://wp.me/p14yVA-dY […]

    Pingback by Tweets that mention CREW fights Frugal Lawmakers « Ken's Project Blog -- Topsy.com — February 13, 2011 @ 12:11 pm | Reply


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