Trump’s Budget pick failed to pay taxes for employee: report

Trump’s Budget pick failed to pay taxes for employee: report
© Greg Nash

President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpWhat the Mueller report tells us about Putin, Russia and Trump's election Fox's Brit Hume fires back at Trump's criticism of the channel Anti-US trade war song going viral in China MORE’s pick to head the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) failed to pay more than $15,000 in state and federal unemployment taxes on a household employee, according to a questionnaire he provided to the Senate Budget Committee.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.), a hard-line advocate of government spending cuts, admitted that he “failed to pay [Federal Insurance Contributions Act taxes] and federal and state unemployment taxes on a household employee for the years 2000-2004” The New York Times reported.

He said he has since paid more than $15,000, and will also pay penalties and interest. Mulvaney is set to face the Senate Budget and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committees next week for confirmation hearings.

Similar tax failures have derailed past Cabinet picks. Two of President Clinton’s attorney general nominees were removed from consideration after it was revealed they did not pay “nanny taxes.” And President Obama’s pick for secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Daschle, was dropped in 2009 for failure to pay more than $128,000 in taxes.

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Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer wants investigation into Chinese-designed New York subway cars Getting serious about infrastructure Schumer calls on McConnell to hold vote on Equality Act MORE (D-N.Y.) was quick to denounce Mulvaney’s tax compliance issues, suggesting in a Wednesday statement that the revelation could be disqualifying.

“When other previous Cabinet nominees failed to pay their fair share in taxes, Senate Republicans forced those nominees to withdraw from consideration,” Schumer said in a statement. “If failure to pay taxes was disqualifying for Democratic nominees, then the same should be true for Republican nominees.”

The Trump team dismissed the issue, saying in a statement to the Times that Mulvaney had “taken the appropriate follow-up measures.”

“Nobody is more qualified and more prepared to rein in Washington spending and fight for taxpayers than Mick Mulvaney,” the statement said. “Congressman Mulvaney raised the issue surrounding the care of his premature triplets immediately upon being tapped for this position, and has taken the appropriate follow-up measures. The administration fully stands behind Representative Mulvaney.”

Mulvaney’s failure to pay the unemployment taxes is another stumbling block in the formation of Trump’s Cabinet. Many of his picks have run into questions about conflicts of interest and ethical compliance since being selected.