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Friday, October 3, 2008

Gov. Palin Releases Tax Returns and Financial Disclosure Forms

Governor Palin this afternoon released her 2006 and 2007 tax returns, along with her 2007-08 financial disclosure form (and accompanying footnotes).  Here are her tax data, along with the comparable data from John McCain, Barack Obama, and Joe Biden:

Palin_tax_returns_3   

Gov. Palin's charitable contributions do not approach the 10% tithe required by her evangelical church, but they are in line with the average charitable contribution of Americans with her income and they are over ten times greater (on a percentage basis) than Joe Biden's miserly charitable contributions.

It does not appear that Gov. Palin reported as income the per diem reimbursement she received for travel, meals, and lodging expenses as governor of Alaska.  Her 2007 W-2 reports $107,987 of income as governor, and the Washington Post pegs her governor's salary as $125,000.  I blogged the tax issue raised by the per diem at:

Update #1:  Thanks to the readers who pointed out that Gov. Palin's salary was $125,000 in 2007.  I have corrected the post to include this information.

Update #2:   I'm surprised that Gov. Palin didn't tell Sen. Biden last night: "Joe, you made twice as much money as I did over the past two years, yet I gave six times more to charity than you did."

Update #3:  Gov. Palin has released this opinion letter from Washington D.C. tax lawyer Roger M. Olsen stating that she was entitled to rely on the state of Alaska's determination that her per diem reimbursements do not constitute income to her.

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2008/10/palin-releases.html

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Comments

Stateline dot org has a chart. Apparently, it's $125,000:

http://www.stateline.org/live/details/story?contentId=207914

Posted by: Mike Meyer | Oct 3, 2008 5:17:03 PM

As of 2007, Alaska gubernatorial salary is $125K/yr, according to http://www.stateline.org/live/details/story?contentId=207914. Doesn't seem to match, though.

Posted by: matt | Oct 3, 2008 5:21:06 PM

Good work, thanks!!

Posted by: Mike F | Oct 3, 2008 5:21:40 PM

Hi, See http://fin.admin.state.ak.us/dof/financial_reports/resource/SB155Report2007.pdf, Compensation tab - her 2007 calendar year income is listed as 125,004.

Thanks for your website.

Regards,

Laura the Accounting Manager

Posted by: Laura | Oct 3, 2008 5:28:45 PM

I'm not astute enough to figure her forms out myself, but a commenter on Politico asked whether it was appropriate to take the home office deduction while also claiming per diem. Thoughts?

Posted by: Bill | Oct 3, 2008 5:59:02 PM

the Joint Committee on Taxation, after examining the tax returns for President Richard Nixon, concluded that Mr. Nixon should have included the value of air travel on government jets for his family members as part of his gross income.

Per Diem is not the only issue. Flying Todd and the brood around and getting reimbursed for it without declaring it as income is still questionable.

Posted by: trifecta | Oct 3, 2008 6:41:52 PM

I was surprised that she uses H&R Block to prepare her return, instead of a real CPA.

Also, I don't think the section 179 deduction for the snow racers should have been allowed since it reduced the income from that activity to a loss.

Posted by: Twolf | Oct 3, 2008 7:17:46 PM

The difference between Gov. Palin's $125k salary and the $107,987 reported on her W-2 is probably represent contributions to her 401(k), flexible spending accounts, or health insurance premiums. All of these are contributions are excluded from an employee's taxable income.

In response to to Bill's comment about the home office deduction, my reading of the return is that the deductions were made with respect to Todd's fishing and snowmobile racing business.

Posted by: Marco | Oct 3, 2008 7:42:03 PM

FYI: It is normal to omit travel pay from income tax reporting. I was in the US Army for many years and traveled on temporary duty (TDY), collecting Per diem, clothing allowances, lodging reembursments, etc., no doubt totaling 6 or more figures and I never reported a cent of it on income taxes. It is not counted as "income" by the IRS.

If someone feels there is some kind of issue with this policy, I suggest that they contact their representative and have the regulation changed. And while they are at it, they might want to point a finger at nearly, if not every person, who works for, or has worked for, the federal government (and many in state and local governments) because I seriously doubt they have claimed any per diem for any trip. Start with all of our senators who travel on official business for photo ops to Irag, followed closely by Gen. Petraeus, who have been traveling back and forth from Iraq to Wash. D.C. and back. Oh and most of the military.

I hope this helps.

Posted by: Frank A Bucci | Oct 3, 2008 7:55:25 PM

Are the 25000 in gifts taxable? looks like she declared $2500, but the article notes $2800 in January 2007 alone.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/25/AR2008092503988_pf.html

Posted by: Phil | Oct 3, 2008 10:13:53 PM

tax cheat! NOT a reformer, and she's guilty of what she claims to be trying to clean up...

so she's a hypocrite as well.

bring on the theocracy!

Posted by: mike | Oct 3, 2008 10:32:52 PM

This guy says he knows of no rule that requires inclusion of income for spousal and family travel

How about Section 274(m)(3)

Posted by: Barack | Oct 4, 2008 2:17:42 AM

Actually, it is not possible to determine charitable giving from income tax filings. It is only possible to determine the extent of itemized deductions for charitable giving. Many Americans give more to charities than they itemize. (I certainly do.) You cannot deduct 20 dollar bills thrown into Sunday collection baskets, for example. Also, many individuals give time in addition (or in lieu of) money to charities, and such labor contributions are not deductible either. Senator Obama certainly fits into this category for example, having donated many years of his life to community organizing and civil rights representation at basically survival-only wages -- one of the "thousand points of light" Bush #1 talked about.

Also -- and any tax expert should have pointed this out before any "analysis" -- Senator Obama is married and files a joint return with his wife, while Senator McCain files a separate return apart from his (extremely wealthy) spouse. It is simply not possible nor credible to compare household charitable deductions for the Obamas with individual charitable deductions for McCain (ex-Cindy). That's a clear "apples to oranges" comparison. Quite simply, it would be possible for Senator McCain to donate *all* of his after-tax income to charity and still pay for any of his living expenses through household income (i.e. his wife). The Obamas could never do that and still survive.

I'm not sure if the Bidens file jointly, but Governor Palin does not. Her "low" charitable deductions should not be taken seriously either, because her husband earns a considerable income. The couple owns a private airplane, something which would be difficult to support solely through Governor Palin's income. It is theoretically possible that her husband deducts more (or less for that matter) charitable contributions than she does.

Senator McCain, Governor Palin, and (if applicable) Senator Biden should release their spouse's tax returns. It just isn't possible to get a household view on their financial situation without that critical information.

Also, it's really not sensible to look at charitable giving as percentages anyway, because incomes vary. For someone earning $20,000 per year, donating 5% to charity is a phenomenal act of generosity, resulting in a serious personal lifestyle impairment. For someone earning $20,000,000, 5% has virtually no lifestyle impact. And not all 501(c)3s are created equal. An awful lot of wealthy people donate to "captive" charities -- charities that enrich themselves with goodwill, PR, and business interest benefits. (A beer distributor donating to Alcoholics Anonymous; a casino owner donating to Gamblers Anonymous. Such donations could be quite helpful to secure ongoing business regulatory approvals, but they are still legitimate tax deductions if properly documented.) And there are serious tax advantages to donating certain forms of wealth. In other words, not all charitable dollars are created equal.

Posted by: Timothy | Oct 4, 2008 5:59:08 AM

Frank, there are two issues here. First, she collected a per diem while she was staying in her own home in Wasilla - 45 miles from the office she used in Anchorage. How do you collect a per diem while staying in your own home and not consider that income? Second, and this is the big one, IMO, she collected per diem for her family when they traveled with her. I believe the IRS is pretty clear that this should be considered income.

Posted by: Fred | Oct 4, 2008 8:48:17 AM

Per-diem isn't taxable, as TaxProf surely knows...it's considered reimbursement for job-related expenses incurred. If Palin is a tax cheat for this, then everyone I've ever worked with ought to be behind bars, too.

And sorry, Timothy, you can deduct that collection-plate twenty. You have to have receipts for anything over a certain threshold ($250 if memory serves me). If you itemize and don't include everything you've donated, you're a fool, and Biden is no fool. He obviously itemizes; he just doesn't give much to charity.

Posted by: Jeffersonian | Oct 4, 2008 10:14:29 AM

Senator McCain, Governor Palin, and (if applicable) Senator Biden should release their spouse's tax returns. It just isn't possible to get a household view on their financial situation without that critical information.

"If applicable"? Joe Biden's wife died years ago.

Also, I noticed that Obama's name was missing from that list. In the interest of disclosure, where are Obama's records from the state senate? His grades from Colombia and Harvard? His thesis? Campaign donation records from the >$200MM in foreign and under $200 contributions?

It just isn't possible to get a complete view of his personal character without that critical information.

Posted by: Bryan | Oct 4, 2008 10:33:42 AM

Governor Palin's 2007 tax return IS a MFJ return; not MFS as noted by Timothy above. All of Todd's business activities are included in this return (including his snow machine racing business - which, as a business, is entitled to take a S179 deduction for tax purposes as long as he has enough income to support this deduction).

Some of the comments above are laughable and are clearly made by individuals who do not understand the basics of personal income tax law. Look it up on the IRS website people. I'm a CPA in public practice and there is nothing out of the ordinary about this return. I see returns very similar to this one every day.

Posted by: Michelle | Oct 4, 2008 10:54:05 AM

Twolf wrote: "I was surprised that she uses H&R Block to prepare her return, instead of a real CPA."

Well, this is probably the most credible fact/evidence to date to establish that she's not a "Washington Politico" but just a "average hockey mom from Wasilla."

Which of course leads to the issue of would you want someone who trusts H&R Block to prepare her return to be VP. Again, her choice of return preparer reflects upon her judgment.

-ATP

Posted by: Adjunct Law Prof | Oct 4, 2008 11:09:50 AM

Unless I can't read, the Palins clearly are filing a joint income tax return and the numbers in the table include both Sarah's and Todd's income. Timothy should amend his post about Todd's "considerable income."

Posted by: Layne | Oct 4, 2008 11:26:59 AM

Bryan said: "If applicable"? Joe Biden's wife died years ago

That was the FIRST wife. I believe Jill Biden is alive and well or then that was a ghost I saw on stage with him after the debates.

Posted by: JRichardson | Oct 4, 2008 11:33:09 AM

"Which of course leads to the issue of would you want someone who trusts H&R Block to prepare her return to be VP. Again, her choice of return preparer reflects upon her judgment"

You know, like associations with people in the neighborhood like Ayers.

Jeez. The next complaint will be that she signed her return with a blue pen. Have you elitists ever met a goalpost you haven't moved at will?

Posted by: rrr | Oct 4, 2008 11:44:01 AM

Timothy - for what it's worth, my understanding is that Todd Palin cut back considerably on his employment when his wife was elected governor in order to be Mr Mom.

And I also know of quite a few folks with incomes no higher than theirs who in fact own their own planes. Two reasons I'm a very strong Palin supporter are that she's the only one in the race who has a real middle-class lifestyle (including trying to pay for $5 avgas) funded on a middle-class income, and that she doesn't have her health insurance paid for life (well, until she's VP) like the Senatorial lizards and her family is uninsurable except through some kind of large-group arrangement.

Posted by: mrkwong | Oct 4, 2008 11:45:11 AM

My husband, an airline pilot, has to report the per diem he gets. It is usually under what the government stated costs are for the cities he has to fly to, so it usually is not big addition to his taxable income.
The line for that entry is 12b on his W-2. When I do our taxes using turbo tax, I enter that as directed and later in business deductions I enter what the government stated costs are for the cities he flies to. His scheduling software company does a work up of all the places he goes on the days he flies and sends us a legal document stating his actual expenses using the government numbers.
The per diem she gets should be listed on her W-2.

Posted by: Gindy | Oct 4, 2008 1:23:40 PM

When Joe Biden was hanging around that gas station and that redneck was telling him, "JOE, I can't afford to fill up my tank", I'm surprised JOE didn't give the poor guy a handout on the spot. But now I see he's just uncharitable.

Anyway when I was in the Navy and got per diem while on TAD, I certainly didn't claim that as taxable income, and the Navy certainly didn't put it on my W-2.I guess that makes me a tax cheat too?

Posted by: Kevin | Oct 4, 2008 1:59:22 PM

I'm not sure it's appropriate to bring into the discussion what her church "requires." For that matter, is a tithe supposed to be 10% of gross or net?

Is using a "real CPA" more indicative of someone who wants to pay the right tax or the minimum tax? On balance, I think it shows they felt like they have nothing to hide, and didn't want to pay to much to have forms filled out.

My understanding is the Palins' small puddle-jumper airplane was passed down by family. It's docked on the lake behind their house. I saw it on Greta.

Posted by: edh | Oct 4, 2008 4:44:34 PM

rrr-

In other words, Sarah Palin needs this gig. She needs to get that growing family of hers into a decent health care plan.

Posted by: triumph | Oct 4, 2008 5:03:34 PM

Also, I don't think the section 179 deduction for the snow racers should have been allowed since it reduced the income from that activity to a loss

A taxpayer has the ability to consider all their earned income when looking at Sect 179 including another Sch C such as the fishing business.

Posted by: SteveE | Oct 4, 2008 5:16:04 PM

You state that "Gov. Palin's charitable contributions do not approach the 10% tithe required by her evangelical church." The Wasilla Bible Church does not "require" a 10% tithe - giving by members and guests is voluntary.

Posted by: Dan Nunley | Oct 4, 2008 6:23:10 PM

Nonsense - just because the State of Alaska determined that the per diem is not taxable as income for state purposes, it does not relieve her of having to report it on her Federal tax return.

Posted by: th | Oct 4, 2008 7:41:16 PM

Barack-I can see why you would not want to compare charitable contributions from the Obama's. According to their 2000 thru 2004 5 year tax returns, their AIG was a little over 1.2 million dollars. Their charitable contributions for this 5 year period was 10,770 dollars, less than 1 percent of their AIG. Their increase in charitable contributions started the same time as his bid for president. Coincidence? He and Biden are just your typical liberals who are all for giving to the poor as long it is your money and not theirs. Obama'S AIG in 2000 was roughly 240,000 and 2008 it was almost 1 million. Biden asked in the VP debate if you were better off than you were 8 years ago. Obama would have to answer yes to that question and thus have to admit that he proffited off the Bush economic policy. Also, the Palin private plane you speak of, is a two-seat Piper Cub. It is a pretty popular means of transportation in Alaska due to the lack of roads. You can usually buy one of these airplanes for 20,000 to 30,000 dollars, about the price of a mid-size car, or in Obama's case, about 1 week of limo rides.

Posted by: DE | Oct 4, 2008 9:35:22 PM

Ok, I'm not an accountant or an IRS employee, but the per diem thing strikes me as way off.

Per diem usually isn't reportable as income because it's for expenses when travelling on business away from home. That would be: for hotels, dining out, cab fare, etc.

If you aren't travelling on business away from home, you can't legitimately call a per diem payment an "expense reimubursement" because there are no expenses such as hotel, dining out, cab fare, etc. Instead, the per diem payment becomes an "income supplement" and I can see no reason why that would not be taxable as income.

Maybe someone should call the IRS tax cheat tip line and let them make the determination. If you or I got caught out doing something like this, I'm pretty sure what the IRS ruling on it would be.

Posted by: Jennifer | Oct 4, 2008 9:41:07 PM

And sorry, Timothy, you can deduct that collection-plate twenty. You have to have receipts for anything over a certain threshold ($250 if memory serves me). If you itemize and don't include everything you've donated, you're a fool, and Biden is no fool.

The IRS changed the documentation requirements for cash a while ago. (I'm surprised you missed this.) The Salvation Army (with its metal buckets) was upset about the changes, among other charities. Now a bank record is required (which obviously doesn't work for cash), or a written communication from the charity (which is pretty much impossible for cash bills left on the collection plate). You used to be able to personally document, in a little book or other log, cash note contributions. No longer.

People who do not take every deduction possible are not fools. Some are extremely savvy individuals who are trying to decrease the odds of IRS audits. Others -- and many politicians may be in this category -- believe that paying taxes is a patriotic obligation, one of the responsibilities Americans have in order to support a strong defense, strong social programs, and other needs. And if they "err," they should err on the side of supporting America rather than trying to vacuum up every last penny they might be legally entitled to. Perhaps such thinking is alien to a tax blog popular among tax accountants -- I don't know. However, I just spent much of the last tax year convincing my accountant that I was correct (and he wasn't) in two tax law areas, and in both cases I was arguing on behalf of the federal government and in favor of increased personal tax liability. Am I a fool for making sure I pay every penny (and perhaps a bit more) that is owed? I hope not.

As for the Palins filing jointly, sorry I missed that. I was, however, making the general point about not comparing MFS with MFJ returns. Also, to expand on Governor Palin's case, she (and her husband) are caring for a Down Syndrome child, and some people would consider that a charitable act (and still others a voluntarily undertaken one). Such work is not reflected in IRS returns. This cuts all ways -- I'm not making a partisan argument here as should have been clear from my original comment. If only it were so easy to look at a line on a tax form to judge someone's degree of social responsibility, "charitable heart," or whatever.

The Palins do seem to have a lot of unreported income, so let's not get too carried away drawing any conclusions from reported AGIs. The Palins are also the only family among the four who receive at least some state-provided housing and associated benefits (e.g. Governor's mansion in Juneau) which is also unreported income. Again, I'm not necessarily criticizing the fact a governor gets to live in a state-provided mansion. I'm just pointing it out as one reason among many why reported AGIs only go so far to illustrate household income and wealth.

Posted by: Timothy | Oct 4, 2008 11:53:53 PM

DE, Todd's airplane is a 1958 Piper Super Cub on floats. In average used condition that's a $57,000 airplane (just checked the equivalent of "Blue Book"), and that's without the floats (which his has) or any other improvements (such as GPS, which is typical).

But it's not really the purchase price for the airplane, it's the fixed and variable operating expenses that require an above-average income to support. Fortunately the Palins have that. By the way, aviation fuel is now up to $5.25 (and 9/10ths) per gallon at the Wasilla Airport.

Posted by: Timothy | Oct 5, 2008 12:09:30 AM

Gov. Palin's charitable contributions do not approach the 10% tithe required by her evangelical church

Sarah Palin claims not to be a member of any church — thus no church can “require” her to contribute anything.

Posted by: Michael McNeil | Oct 5, 2008 1:33:03 AM

I have a few questions.

1) Why did she only produce two years of returns?

2) Was it appropriate for Todd to claim so many deductions on a hobby (racing)?

3) Is it at all strange that they have amassed such net worth on small salaries and with four now five kids?

4) Is it normal for someone with a 6 digit income to pay 10% in taxes? Hardly reason to complain methinks.

Posted by: Pablo Zed | Oct 5, 2008 8:13:02 AM

Just so everyone understands, in the first 19 months of her governorship, she's claimed per diem for 312 nights she spent in her own home - which is 45 miles away from her office in Anchorage. That's almost $17,000. Alaska may be fine with this, but would the IRS?

Posted by: Fred | Oct 5, 2008 10:49:56 AM

Facts: Taxpayer received $17,000 in per diem payments from her employer, the State of Alaska, for which she is the Governor. Alaska considers the governors “duty station” to be the governor’s mansion in Juneau. Taxpayer’s home is a house she owns and in which her family resides, which is located in Wasilla. The Wasilla home is located within 50 miles of state offices located in Anchorage. For purposes of the memo, Wasilla will be considered to be Anchorage, as commutes of less than 50 miles are usually not deductible.

A spokesperson for Alaska has indicated that per diem paid for working on state business in Anchorage was not taxable, because the governors “duty station” is Juneau.


Issues: Is the per diem taxable?

Law: The state’s department of administration, division of finance, has a written policy on the “Income Tax Implications of Long-Term Per Diem.” We assume that it correctly interprets federal income tax law. http://fin.admin.state.ak.us/dof/travel/resourc...

Issues: There are at least two issues that need to be addressed, both of which lead us to conclude that the per diem payments are taxable. We conclude that the State of Alaska has not applied its own policy in evaluating the taxability of taxpayer’s per diem. Why is beyond the scope of this memo.

Issue One: The per diem is taxable, because the taxpayer’s “tax home” is Anchorage (Wasilla).

“If the employee does not work at their PCN duty station at least 50% of the time (vacation time does not count toward time worked at the duty station), then the State must first consider whether the employee works the majority of their time at another location, making this location their principle place of business. If they do, this other location becomes their tax home.”

It is clear that the Governor did not work at least 50% of her first 19 months at her duty station. Hence it may not be her “tax home”. It is just as that a majority of time was spent working in Anchorage. Hence, Anchorage is the governor’s tax home.

Per diem received for travel to one’s tax home is taxable income.

Issue Two: If taxpayer’s tax home was Juneau, taxpayer’s per diem is taxable, because taxpayer’s temporary assignment to Anchorage is expected to last longer than one year.e year.

“Please note, per diem becomes taxable at the point at which it is determined the
assignment will last one year or more.”

We have discussed this issue with the IRS and the following summarizes the IRS comments on the one-year rule and taxable per diem

• One year does not necessarily mean 365 consecutive days.
• Interruptions generally do not start the clock over again on the one-year rule unless they are significant (significant was not defined, but IRS rulings indicate seasonal shutdowns are not considered significant).
• The one-year rule requires the employer to look at the total time spent at the "temporary" location. If an assignment to a location is expected to last more than one year, or actually lasts longer than one year, then any per diem paid at this "temporary" location is considered compensation.”

Given the above law, the facts demonstrate that taxpayer’s assignment to Anchorage is definitely expected to last more than 365 days and those days need not be consecutive. Nor do interruptions in days spent working in Anchorage restart the one year period. As employer, the state was required to look at the total time the governor spent working in Anchorage.

Given that the governor’s assignment to Anchorage was plainly expected to last more than year, her per diem is clearly taxable, even were Juneau her “tax home”, which it is not.

Conclusion: Per diem payments paid Governor Palin by her employer, the State of Alaska, are taxable income under the Federal Income Tax for at least two reasons. Her “tax home” is not her “duty station” in Juneau, but Anchorage. Even were her tax home the governor’s mansion in Juneau and her assignment to Anchorage temporary, per diem paid for working in Anchorage would be taxable, since it is expected to last more than a year.

Posted by: FactFanatic | Oct 5, 2008 3:48:27 PM

Biden was paying his own -- not inconsiderable -- commuting expenses, most likely. Palin was being paid for hers. ... and her husband and children's travel expenses.

A monthly commuter ticket on Amtrak between Wilmington and Washington appears to be $1,062. A ten-ride ticket is $472. Individual tickets from $59 to $80 for regional (90 minute ride) and $97 to $125 for Acela (80 minutes). I won't try to guess what subsidies are involved, but Biden isn't adding to the fuel usage or pollution, for his ~100 mile rail commute.

Posted by: LVTfan | Oct 5, 2008 4:03:41 PM

'Gov. Palin's charitable contributions do not approach the 10% tithe required by her evangelical church.' A tithe does NOT go to a charity, it goes to the church. What Sarah has reported is a separate sum (to charity).

Posted by: Ralph | Oct 6, 2008 8:54:56 PM

After turning himself in to authorities, 20 year old David Kernell, son of Democratic Representative of Tennessee, Mike Kernell, is facing five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release. He will be charged for hacking into GOP VP candidate Sarah Palin’s personal E-mail account. It is alleged that after reading the contents, he took a screen shot and posted it on a public Web site. The contents included email addresses, pictures, birthdays, and phone numbers of family members and more. To top it off, after resetting the password, he also posted the new one he had created, which allowed others to access the E-mail account themselves. Nonetheless, Kernell pleaded not guilty to the charges. Facing a $250,000 fine is intense. At $1,500 per loan, it would take about 167 individual payday loans to cover that outrageous expense.
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Posted by: Payday Loan Advocate | Oct 16, 2008 1:12:38 AM

I think the decision is for the common good and for the welfare of the community.

Some politicians like Ohio’s governor, Ted Strickland, is in staunch opposition to the payday loan and cash advance industries, but has recently started fighting to pass a gambling bill. The bill would add Keno to Ohio’s lottery games. The bill actually took effect in August 2008, but is being challenged on the November 4 ballot. Strickland states that the bill is a part of a noble effort to raise money for the Ohio public schools. The bill also proposes an amendment to the state constitution that would ultimately authorize the construction of a $600 million casino near Dayton. Strickland is also an ordained Methodist minister, and has been taking criticism from all different kinds of people, including member criticisms from people from all walks of life, including his fellow Methodists. Strickland offers a utilitarian argument: although he opposes the expansion of gaming, this bill will be best for the common good of our children. It’s obvious to see how desperate Strickland is to improve Ohio’s economy.

By supporting this bill, Governor Strickland is more or less facilitating financial irresponsibility. Strickland thinks its okay for his citizens to gamble away their rent or mortgage payments for the sake of their children’s futures, but disapproves if people need help from a PAYDAY LENDER when they’re short on cash? Can you say “hypocrite?”

Posted by: David Johnston | Oct 28, 2008 2:36:41 AM

In less than one week, we will find out who will be our Commander in Chief for the next four years. There are new controversies surrounding both the Democrat and Republican camps. For instance, there has been a lot of talk all over the news and media reporting that the Republican National Committee spent about $150,000 on new clothes for Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin. This story has not only attracted the attention of many Americans, but has stirred a flood of negative publicity. Although both Palin and Democratic Presidential Candidate Barack Obama have spent a large amount on clothing alone, some people have been quick to target the Alaska Governor. However, we are living in a society where looks, more than anything else, are what we base our judgment of people on. If you have one candidate who is dressed in designer clothing, and somebody else dresses in attire distinctly from a clearance rack, the latter will not be taken seriously. They spent a lot less on Sarah’s wardrobe than Obama spends on TV commercials. And look at the attention Sarah Palin is getting with her wardrobe. It doesn’t seem like such a bad political move. Anyway, America should not make a decision on who to vote for based on clothing, especially since the future of our country is at stake. With this in mind, vote for the candidate that supports our freedom for human rights and personal financial responsibility, such as the continued rights to no fax payday loans.
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Posted by: Payday Loan Advocate | Oct 29, 2008 2:23:39 AM

What did you mean by "the 10% tithe required by her evangelical church"? To say "10% tithe" is sort of redundant, given that "tithe" means tenth, and my understanding is that Governor Palin attends a church but is not a member. I'm curious about your evidence for claiming that "her evangelical church" requires those who attend it to tithe.

Posted by: KS | Nov 28, 2008 5:02:55 PM