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BY: David Rutz
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune editorial board is growing tired of the constant controversies surrounding freshman lawmaker Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.).
Month - Problem - Omar - Board - Fines
"Every month seems to bring a fresh problem" with Omar, the board wrote, after she agreed to repay $3,500 and $500 fines following an investigation into misuse of campaign funds. The Campaign Finance Board found Omar had filed a joint tax return with a man when she was legally married to another at the time.
"Omar’s political rise has been marred by a series of unforced errors, including intemperate remarks and tweets earlier this year that were widely perceived as anti-Semitic," the board wrote. "Every month seems to bring a fresh problem."
Board - Omar - Tax - Discrepancy - Investigation
The board said Omar's tax discrepancy was potentially serious enough to merit further investigation:
It’s against the law in Minnesota to file jointly unless one filer is legally married to the other. Last year Omar told the Star Tribune that she had married her partner "in her faith," and had earlier divorced her first husband "in her faith." That’s fine for religious purposes. But for tax purposes, only civil marriages qualify. It’s not known whether she benefited materially by filing jointly. That is something that voters, who are obliged to follow tax laws no matter how painful, are entitled to know.
Lawmaker - Tax - Attorney - Status - Filing
It’s not too much to expect that a lawmaker would check with a tax attorney on a rather complicated marital status before filing.
If this pattern continues, further investigation may be necessary. Omar could have avoided nearly every infraction by taking simple measures in advance to determine whether her actions would pass legal muster. In its findings, the board noted that Minnesota "House...
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