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Cindy McCain Won't Release Tax Returns

Should the spouse of a presidential candidate be expected to disclose his or her tax returns if the couple files separately? That’s the question now that Cindy McCain has declared she will never make her tax returns public. Opponents of John McCain are already criticizing this move but Mrs. McCain says it’s a matter of privacy.

A natural impulse might be to ask “what is she hiding?” But that’s a slippery slope of an impulse. We can’t assume anyone who wants privacy has something seedy to hide. Then again, the McCain’s have to know that such a refusal will raise questions. Wouldn’t it be easier just to release her returns?

Personally, I’m o.k. with her keeping her tax returns secret. She’s always filed separately from her husband and has business and family financial interests that have little or nothing to do with John McCain’s public career. Even though she is now a “public figure,” I don’t think the need for transparency in government should require her to disclose financial matters that she’s always kept separate from her husband. We aren’t electing Cindy McCain and unless there are convincing allegations that John McCain has been using his wife’s finances to funnel illegal campaign contributions, I think we should respect the woman’s choice to keep her tax return private.

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  • Adam

    Will be interesting to see how her view on privacy is treated by the media compared to Heinz in 2004

  • Grant Gould

    Good for her. It’s about time that someone stood up to this ridiculous notion that there is no private life for public figures.

    Of course, some IRS flunky will doubtless leak the returns to the media anyway, but the attempt is at least worth something.

  • Pdx632

    Cindy McCains right to privacy ended the day she spent as “co-host” on The View to pimp her husbands campaign. As long as Faux News insists on examining the financials of the Clinton Library to seek out wrongdoing, the same is fair for Cindy.

  • http://samefacts.com Mark Kleiman

    In at least one case, Cindy McCain’s business dealings cost the taxpayers a ton of money. When John McCain intervened to help Charles Keating keep running the fraudulent savings and loan which the Feds eventually had to bail out for $2.3 billion dollars, Cindy McCain was involved in a real estate venture with Charles Keating. So if she won’t reveal her tax returns, how are we to know whether her husband’s public actions are still benefiting her private business partners at our expense?

    http://www.slate.com/id/1004633/