This is rather obvious–it wouldn’t solve the deficit problem entirely, but it would help. President Obama has been promoting the Buffett Rule to increase the amount of taxes that the wealthy pay. It won’t really put a dent in the deficit, but politically it sounds good. John Hinderaker at Power Line has a better idea–he calls it the Geithner Rule which is: everyone pays what he owes under existing laws. Wow, what a concept!
The article at Power LIne reports:
When he worked for the International Monetary Fund, the fund did not pay withholding taxes on his income, but rather paid Geithner a specifically-designated additional amount which Geithner was supposed to use to pay self-employment taxes. Geithner kept that money, but didn’t pay the taxes.
When Secretary Geithner was later audited, he paid what he owed for 2003 and 2004. But he didn’t pay what he owed for 2001 and 2002 because the statute of limitations had run on those years. Later, when he was nominated for Secretary of the Treasury, he paid 2001 and 2002 taxes.
The article reports:
Geithner is not the only tax cheat working in the Obama administration. As Glenn Reynolds has pointed out repeatedly, no fewer than 41 of Obama’s White House aides owe back taxes to the IRS, adding up to $831,000. But they aren’t alone: 638 Congressional staffers owe another $9.3 million, and federal employees, altogether, owe $1 billion in back taxes.
How about we pass a law that prevents anyone who owes back taxes from working for the government until they pay their taxes?
Requiring high government officials to actually pay their taxes would not end the deficit, but it would help. Preventing tax delinquents from serving in government might also encourage them to be more conscientious in paying the government what they owe.