April 14, 2010

Why Won’t Scott McInnis Release his Tax Returns?

Via Hannah Garroutte, intern blogger for NewEraNews.org

Since 1998, almost all Colorado major-party gubernatorial (fancy word for Governor) candidates have released their tax forms to the media. There has only been one exception during this 12-year period, and Scott McInnis might make that two.

Although his website proudly claims that he’s a “longtime conservative with a record to show for it,” it seems like he’s not wiling to share all. The current Republican candidate for Governor has refused to release his tax returns.

Requesting tax returns from candidates is common practice for the media. These returns show more than just income and can give voters information such as charitable giving, possible conflicts of interest, and even tax shelters.

“How a candidate handles their own personal finances is an indicator of how they would handle the government’s finances,” said Jenny Flanagan, executive director of Colorado Common Cause, a government- watchdog group. “They also help the voter and public understand what conflicts might exist if they are elected.”

The Denver Post goes on to say,

McInnis represented the 3rd Congressional District from 1993 through 2004, the last year he filed public disclosures. At that time, his assets were valued between $1.5 million and $5 million and included everything from stock to real estate investments. Since then, McInnis has been a partner at the Denver office of Hogan & Hartson and is a paid board member of KSL Capital Partners, a private equity firm specializing in travel and leisure enterprises. His campaign declined to disclose his board compensation.

Often, the information in candidates tax returns have no serious political consequences, but becomes more damaging when they refuse to release the information. When someone won’t release the information it makes everyone wonder what they are hiding and what this says about how they will be in position of public power.

When a candidate is running for public office, It is expected that their personal records and lives become public as well.  Their right to privacy becomes compromised since their decisions, possibly made as a result of life experiences and occupation, are going to be representing the general population and not just themselves.

P.S. You’ll notice that in different pictures, McInnis sometimes has a clean upper lip, but at other times is sporting a beautiful mustache. Why the makeover? Well, for a good laugh check out http://mclobbyistmakeover.com/

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