How to Get Politicians to Pay Taxes

Vet them.

Tom Daschle is another one who accidentally forgot to pay taxes. Now, the driver thing is weird and I actually don't know that I would know you had to pay taxes on that (although if I was rich and had services like that I bet I would), but the consulting thing is obvious. But really, go to H&R Block for Pete's sake.

My biggest issue with him being the Health and Human Service Secretary is that his wife is a lobbyist, and his work is lobbyist-like.

Though not a registered lobbyist, the South Dakota Democrat over the last two years earned more than $2.1 million as a "special policy advisor" at Alston & Bird, a law firm with more than 50 lobbying clients in the healthcare industry.

According to financial disclosure forms filed with the Office of Government Ethics, Daschle also took in $153,200 in 2008 for giving speeches to healthcare companies and industry groups such as GE Healthcare, a leading manufacturer of medical devices.

A decade ago, Daschle's wife did some work for the healthcare industry as well. In 1999 and 2000, Linda Daschle was among a group of lobbyists at Baker Donelson Bearman & Caldwell who represented the drug maker Schering-Plough Corp., which paid the law firm $470,000 over the two years, according to federal lobbying reports.

Tom Daschle has indicated he plans to resign from Alston & Bird if he is confirmed. He already stepped down from more than a dozen boards, including that of the Mayo Clinic, another influential voice in the healthcare debate.

Can't we find someone that knows healthcare but doesn't have all these ties?


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