Senate Democrat: Geithner’s Tax Offenses “Completely Unacceptable”
I have a new story up today on the Geithner nomination:
A senior Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee said he believes Treasury Secretary-designate Timothy Geithner’s failure to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes is “completely unacceptable” and would in any other time disqualify Geithner from heading the Treasury Department. But the senator, Kent Conrad of North Dakota, decided to vote for Geithner because it would take too long to find a replacement candidate for the key cabinet post.
“On the matter of Mr. Geithner’s failure to pay certain self-employment taxes, I find it completely unacceptable,” Conrad said before the committee’s 18-5 vote to approve Geithner yesterday. “I’m a former tax commissioner, I’ve dealt with hundreds of cases like this one, and in normal times that alone would lead me to oppose his confirmation. But these are not normal times, and I personally don’t think we can afford a further delay in the filling of this critically important position.”
…Meanwhile, in written responses to questions from Republicans on the committee, Geithner said it never occurred to him that he had not paid Social Security and Medicare taxes in 2001 and 2002 — even after Internal Revenue Service auditors discovered that he had failed to pay those taxes under the same circumstances in 2003 and 2004.