Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Ron Johnson Tax Numbers Don't Add Up

15-Year Tax Record Shows $12 Million in Assets, But Campaign Claims $10 Million in Wealth to Be Spent

[the following is a press release from One Wisconsin Now]

Madison -- Tax documents obtained from the Wisconsin Department of Revenue by One Wisconsin Now show Oshkosh Tea Party enthusiast and Republican U.S. Senate candidate Ron Johnson and his spouse have reported an estimated $12.2 million in income over the last 15 years. This would appear to either contradict claims by his campaign he will spend between $10-15 million in personal funds, or indicate Johnson has somehow shielded vast sums of money from his tax liability.

"How can Ron Johnson spent $15 million when he's earned $12 million over the last decade and a half?" asked Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. "Since Ron Johnson is already trying to hide the true nature of his wealth from the people of Wisconsin, this raises serious questions."

Johnson recently missed the deadline for filing a public financial disclosure report required by the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. Records from the DOR show Johnson and his wife have had a total of $824,976 in net tax. Dividing by the state's top tax rate of 6.75 percent, they have an estimated $12.2 in income from 1994 to 2008. (Figures for 2009 were not available):

Year      Net Tax        Est. Income

1994     $50,540       $748,741

1995     $67,829       $1,004,874

1996     $61,485       $910,889

1997     $74,225       $1,100,074

1998     $43,888       $650,193

1999     $32,692       $484,326

2000     $49,126       $727,793

2001     $58,143       $861,378

2002     $44,881       $664,904

2003     $47,345       $701,407

2004     $38,367       $568,400

2005     $30,734       $455,319

2006     $68,538       $1,015,378

2007     $79,997       $1,185,141

2008     $77,156       $1,143,052

2009   Not Available Not Available

Total     $824,976      $12,221,867

"Ron Johnson has some explaining to do about where he's getting this $10 to $15 million to spend on television telling Wisconsin how we need more tax breaks for the rich and big business," said Ross. "Because it doesn't look like it's coming from money he's reporting on his state income taxes."

Before dropping out of the GOP Senate primary, Madison developer Terrence Wall came under fire after One Wisconsin Now showed Wall paid state income tax once in 10 years, while his largest company with assets of between $25 and $50 million paid no state income taxes over 10 years. Wall also rezoned a piece of prime commercial real estate as a phantom "pumpkin patch," seemingly to avoid $34,000 in property taxes by using a tax break meant for working farmers.

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One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.


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