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Question of the Day
“This shouldn’t get us in trouble with the IRS. But you never know,” adds Sam Kazman, the group’s general counsel.
New York City mayoral hopeful Anthony D. Weiner and his rivals better make themselves appealing to the older folks in town. Motivated geezers are likely to decide the big race in that town. People older than 50 are expected to account for more than half of all voters in the upcoming primary and general elections, a historic pattern.
A painstaking AARP analysis of exit polls and census data reveals that 51 percent of the votes during the last mayoral election came from those older than 50. During the 2010 midterms, though the 50-plus population only comprised 42 percent of New York voters, they still accounted for 54 percent of the electorate.
“Issues important to the biggest voting demographic in New York City elections this year aren’t the ones we are hearing the candidates address on the campaign trail,” points out Beth Finkel, who is the AARP’s director in the Empire State.
Indeed, we know the IRS recently spent $49 million in an effort to party hearty and raise employee morale, prompting some observers to recall that the General Services Administration once spent $820,000 on a Las Vegas conference. Employees at the federal agency also received $30 million in unreported bonuses in 2012.
But wait. An internal audit released by GSA’s inspector general finds the agency’s federal acquisition service “improperly intervened” in the award of $900 million in contracts for information technology services to Oracle America, Carahsoft Technology and Deloitte Consulting. See the report here: gsaig.gov, under “What’s new.”
The environment at the agency “appears rife with cronyism, mismanagement, and intimidation,” says Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste, a nonpartisan watchdog. “The report is yet another indication of an agency out of control. It is becoming clear that the inmates are running the asylum at GSA.”
POLL DU JOUR
• 68 percent of Americans say IRS targeting of conservative groups was done for “political reasons;” 19 percent said the scrutiny was the “right policy” under the U.S. tax code.
• 60 percent are closely following news of the IRS story.
• 44 percent say members of the “Obama administration” were involved in the extra scrutiny.
• 40 percent say IRS officials acted on their own.
• 31 percent say the IRS scrutiny of conservatives is illegal, 29 percent say it is unethical.
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