But that doesn't stop some Congressmen from making a big deal about it. According to an item in the WaPo's Federal Diary column today, Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) has introduced legislation that would fire federal tax deadbeats.
“Federal employees have an obvious obligation to pay their federal income taxes,” said Chaffetz. “Because they draw their compensation from the American taxpayers, federal employees owe it to the taxpayers themselves to pay their taxes. If not, they should be fired.”
OK with me. Fire away. But, as I continue to flip through the WaPo, I see a news story about another federal employee with tax problems, one who failed to report assets totaling more than $1 million on legally required financial disclosure forms. Neither did he report or pay taxes on rental income from a villa in the Caribbean, an infraction for which the Internal Revenue Service merely required him to paid the taxes but not any penalties or interest.
I suggest that, in fairness, any federal employee with a tax delinquency should be treated according to the Rangel Rule. That is, they should be treated with the same courtesy that the IRS extends toward the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.