Combs Spouts Off

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Posts Tagged ‘audit congress’

Audit Congress update

Posted by Richard on February 16, 2009

Last Monday, I posted about the new site, AuditCongress.com. I hope you checked them out. Now they've got a petition up, and I enthusiastically support it (I suspect I was one of the first to sign it). So please visit (or revisit) AuditCongress.com, click the link, and sign their petition. Here's the entire text of the petition:

Whereas the Citizens of The United States of America have officials elected and appointed to offices of the highest power and responsibility, and whereas these same officials are human, and subject to the same faults as are all humans, and whereas recent history has shown that members of our Congress as well other high government officials may not have paid the taxes for which they are responsible:

We the undersigned Citizens of The United States of America hereby call upon both houses of the Congress of the United States, the President of the United States, as well as the President's appointees, to immediately volunteer to be audited by the Internal Revenue Service of the United States. Further, we call upon them to make public, in summary, the results of that audit. We further call for an annual audit for all of these named officials to be completed no later than June 30 of the following year, again making the results public within 30 days.

We petition the President to direct the Secretary of the Treasury to conduct audits for all volunteers immediately and to publish the summary results.

We petition the President to within the calendar year 2009, author and offer legislation to Congress enacting into federal law an annual income tax audit process for all of Congress, the President, and all of the President's appointees. We call on the President, The Secretaries of the Cabinet, and members of Congress to actively promote this legislation within the Congress on behalf of the American People until such time as it becomes the law of the land.

I love this idea and think supporting it is a no-brainer. I've got a suggestion for the next step: Dan and Peter should draft a candidate's pledge of support for the Audit Congress idea and ask potential candidates for Congress in 2010 to sign the pledge. Let's see which candidates are willing to say, "I'm squeaky clean and have nothing to hide." And let's let the public know who isn't.

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Audit Congress

Posted by Richard on February 10, 2009

It's come to my attention recently that we seem to have quite a few elected officials and appointees to high government office who forget to declare all their income or can't understand even the relatively simple parts of the tax code. Yet, when their past failings and "oversights" come to light, they usually suffer no consequences other than having to pay up — and usually without any penalties.

This state of affairs has at least two deleterious consequences: 

  • It breeds cynicism among the citizenry and undermines confidence in and commitment to the rule of law.
  • It suggests that there are elected and appointed officials, possibly in sensitive positions, who may be susceptible to blackmail and extortion. 

Dan Murphy and Peter Langlois have an idea for correcting this corrosive situation, and they've set up AuditCongress.com to promote the idea: 

This site is dedicated to a simple proposition.  If you serve the public in a position of high responsibility, you deserve to submit to an IRS audit annually.  If you lobby congress, hold a cabinet position, or serve any federally appointed position, feel free to get in line at the IRS.  Consider it "table stakes" for establishing fiduciary credibility.  We can't afford tax cheats as Congressman and Senators, nor as federal attorneys, prosecutors, or administrators.

When you're finished cheering, go check it out.

If you have some ideas on the subject, contact them about getting posting rights on the blog and a list of topics they'd like someone to address.

But check out the guidelines first. These guys are pretty determined to keep the discussion civil, and they're just a wee bit paranoid about things like defamation and their potential legal liability. Understandable, I suppose — the law doesn't generally cut us ordinary citizens as much slack as it does our rulers public servants.

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