May 6, 2009

NEW YORK POST: OBAMA’S TAX DODGERS:

Here’s a tip for President Obama: Next time you excoriate tax cheats, try to keep Rep. Charles Rangel’s name out of the discussion.

Somehow, it doesn’t further your case. . . . Rangel, of course, knows a thing or two about offshore tax shelters: He’d been operating one for years.

The congressman had to fork over nearly $11,000 in back taxes last year after The Post reported that he failed to disclose more than $75,000 in rental income on his Dominican Republic villa.

Plus, he’s under investigation by a House committee for allegedly helping a company preserve its offshore tax loophole — in exchange for a million-dollar gift to a school named in his honor. Though perhaps that’s not exactly what Obama meant when he gushed that the problems with tax havens “have been highlighted” by Rangel, among others.

Rangel wasn’t the only tax dodger lauded by Obama. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, too, won praise for “taking far-reaching steps to catch overseas tax cheats.” Takes one to know one, we guess.

Geithner, after all, was confirmed despite failing to pay, until nominated, some $43,000 in self-employment taxes.

Obama would be wise to tuck those two safely out of sight when he starts talking, as he did Monday, about paying taxes as “an obligation of citizenship.”

Indeed.