Just weeks after Claire McCaskill became embroiled in a major scandal surrounding her failure to pay $320,000 in property taxes on her private plane, she is now attacking job-creators for not paying enough in federal taxes. According to KRCG, McCaskill assured members of the far-left Grass Roots Organizing (GRO) “that she wants to stop America’s largest corporations from paying zero taxes thanks to foreign tax havens and other loopholes.”
McCaskill’s attack is especially hypocritical considering that McCaskill herself has benefited from many of the same provisions she is now attacking. For example:
McCaskill’s wealthy husband, Joe Shepard, has a history of avoiding federal income taxes. Joe Shepard has created an intentionally-confusing network of more than 280 LPs, LLCs, and shell companies to shield his assets. In the past, this has allowed him to avoid taxes. According to the Kansas City Star (October 18, 2006), “[Shepard’s] 1995 returns, released in a divorce case… show he paid no federal income taxes that year.” Unfortunately, McCaskill has refused to release her family’s tax returns—hiding more recent data from public disclosure. But if the past is any indication, it is possible that McCaskill and her husband have been avoiding federal income taxes for years.
McCaskill has come under fire for maintaining her own foreign tax haven by sheltering business assets in a Bermuda company. In the past, McCaskill was criticized for her interest in a Bermuda-based reinsurance company. At the time, the ethics watchdog group Citizens for Tax Justice declared: “It’s all about avoiding taxes” (Kansas City Star, October 18, 2006). Following the criticism, McCaskill closed the tax shelter.
McCaskill’s private plane was registered in tax-friendly Delaware—an obvious and deliberate attempt to avoid taxation. McCaskill’s multi-million dollar Pilatus plane was registered in Delaware and owned by a Delaware-based corporation called Timesaver, LLC. Delaware is a well-known on-shore tax haven for the wealthy—and many people register their aircraft there for the tax benefits.
Given McCaskill’s history of tax problems and avoidance, she should think twice before hypocritically attacking others for dodging taxes.
Thursday, April 21, 2011
GOP criticizes McCaskill for tax hypocrisy
The Missouri Republican Party jumped all over Sen. Claire McCaskill today, alleging hypocrisy in the senator's criticism of the rich (referred to as job-creators by the GOP) for shirking their duty to pay taxes. From the news release: