Patterico's Pontifications

3/22/2014

Lefties Totally Goof Up Story on Matt Drudge’s Payment of the ObamaCare “Liberty Tax”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:19 pm

TPM and HuffPo are suggesting that Matt Drudge is either stupid or a liar, for saying that he paid the ObamaCare “liberty tax” yesterday for not having health insurance in 2014. Washington Post reporter Karen Tumulty has been hyping the claims on Twitter this morning.

In this post, I am going to gently suggest that it may be more complicated than TPM or HuffPo or Tumulty suggest. The lefties’ understanding of the topic is laughable. But they may have accidentally stumbled onto the right answer, although their reasoning clearly shows they have absolutely no idea why.

TPM calls Drudge a (probable) liar:

Matt Drudge Is (Probably) Lying About Paying A Huge Obamacare ‘Liberty Tax’

It seems conservative monolith Matt Drudge is taking some pride in paying the penalty for not purchasing insurance under Obamacare. He’s even got a name for it.

There’s just one problem: Americans don’t pay a penalty for not having health insurance until they file their 2014 taxes — in 2015. So either Drudge is lying or he paid a huge penalty a year earlier than he needed to.

As I will explain, there is a third option: he’s paying estimated taxes. But I’m jumping the gun. Let’s give TPM some more rope:

As this helpful IRS explainer details, Americans who go without insurance in 2014 should “make an individual shared responsibility payment with your 2014 tax return filed in 2015.”

“You will make the payment when you file your 2014 federal income tax return in 2015,” it says. That’s in part because the penalty is based on one’s annual income.

Similarly, the cited HuffPo article says Drudge’s tweet is “a little head-scratching” because the payment “isn’t even due until more than a year from now, when people file their 2014 federal income-tax returns.”

Briefly, here’s how the individual mandate works: If you lack health insurance for more than three months in a year, you have to pay the IRS a penalty. (There are a whole slew of exemptions from this rule, however.) The penalty will be assessed on your tax return and taken out of whatever refund you’re owed. Again, that won’t happen until 2015 for people who aren’t covered this year.

Again, it’s as if these people never heard of sole proprietors who pay estimated taxes. Here’s what the IRS says about who must pay estimated taxes ahead of time:

Estimated tax is the method used to pay tax on income that is not subject to withholding. This includes income from self-employment, interest, dividends, alimony, rent, gains from the sale of assets, prizes and awards. You also may have to pay estimated tax if the amount of income tax being withheld from your salary, pension, or other income is not enough.

Estimated tax is used to pay income tax and self-employment tax, as well as other taxes and amounts reported on your tax return. If you do not pay enough through withholding or estimated tax payments, you may be charged a penalty. If you do not pay enough by the due date of each payment period you may be charged a penalty even if you are due a refund when you file your tax return.

. . . .

If you are filing as a sole proprietor, partner, S corporation shareholder, and/or a self-employed individual, you generally have to make estimated tax payments if you expect to owe tax of $1,000 or more when you file your return.

Kinda sounds like it might apply to Drudge, huh?

Sole proprietors pay these estimated taxes quarterly, during the tax year. So if you will owe a tax based on your 2014 return, you have to pay estimated taxes during 2014, not in 2015 like other individuals.

Now. I will freely admit that I am not a tax expert like the geniuses at HuffPo or TPM. But I looked at the Form 1040-ES — Estimated Tax for Individuals (.pdf), which is the form sole proprietors like Drudge use to estimate their taxes. This form has the following under a section called “What’s New”:

Health care coverage. When you file your 2014 tax return in 2015, you will need to either (1) indicate on your return that you and your family had health care coverage throughout 2014, (2) claim an exemption from the health care coverage requirement for some or all of 2014, or (3) make a payment if you do not have coverage or an exemption(s) for all 12 months of 2014. For examples on how this payment works, go to www.IRS.gov/aca and click under the “Individuals & Families” section. You may want to consider this when figuring your “Other taxes” on Line 12 of the 2014 Estimated Tax Worksheet. For general information on these requirements, go to www.IRS.gov/aca.

A screenshot:

Screen Shot 2014-03-22 at 1.02.31 PM

Screen Shot 2014-03-22 at 1.02.44 PM

Line 12 is part of what you add up to determine your estimated taxes.

This certainly seems to suggest that the ObamaCare payment factors into the calculation of estimated taxes. Now, it says only that you “may” want to consider this payment when calculating your estimated taxes. But if you’re Matt Drudge, who regularly takes on an administration known for using the IRS to target Obama’s critics, you’re going to make good and damned sure that you’re not setting yourself up for an audit.

So why did I say up front that the lefties may have accidentally stumbled onto the right answer? It turns out that the Treasury Department has issued regulations dealing with the interface between the ObamaCare “shared responsibility payment” requirement and the requirement that one estimate one’s taxes. And — while I am not a tax expert and this is not legal advice!!! — it looks to me that the regulations say that underpayment of the ObamaCare payment will not subject a sole proprietor to penalties.

Here is the set of final regulations (.pdf). Here is what I believe to be the relevant passage:

One commentator expressed concern that taxpayers would have difficulty accurately calculating the shared responsibility payment. Emphasizing the complexity of the calculation, the commentator requested that the IRS not impose accuracy-related penalties under section 6662 for underpayments caused by erroneous section 5000A computations.

Section 6662 does not apply to a section 5000A shared responsibility payment. The accuracy-related penalty of section 6662(a) applies only to underpayments of tax, defined in section 6664. The section 5000A shared responsibility payment is not taken into consideration in determining whether there is an underpayment of tax under section 6664. Therefore, the shared responsibility payment is not taken into account under section 6662.

Let me, without expressing a legal opinion as a lawyer, translate that into English. The “section 5000A shared responsibility payment” is what Drudge is calling a “liberty tax” — the payment you will have to make as an individual if you do not purchase health insurance deemed acceptable by the ObamaCare law. “Section 6662″ is the section that imposes penalties upon people who underpay their estimated taxes.

As long as this rather obscure regulation — which is not referenced on the 1040-ES worksheet! — remains in effect, it looks like they won’t ding you for underpaying your ObamaCare payment in your estimated taxes.

Ah, so the lefties were right all along! Er . . . not exactly. Let’s examine how they reacted when Drudge tried to explain that he was paying estimated taxes. First, TPM:

If Drudge was referring to the employer mandate, it only applies to companies with more than 50 employees. They must cover a certain percentage of their employees or pay a penalty.

But companies with less than 100 employees are exempt from any penalty until 2016. Drudge has never revealed the full extent of his staff, but the Huffington Post characterized it as “small” in a 2012 article about two new hires.

Drudge has not responded to TPM’s follow-up attempts for comment.

Um, no, he was not referring to the employer penalty. He was talking about estimating his taxes as a sole proprietor — a distinction that completely escaped TPM. Here is HuffPo:

There does, however, appear to be one possible explanation that would make Drudge’s statement truthful, albeit still curious.

If Drudge pays estimated income taxes every quarter — a common practice for someone who is self-employed or is the sole proprietor of a business — he could have guesstimated what his penalty will be and added that amount to the check he apparently cut to the IRS on Friday.

“That’s perplexing,” said Brian Haile, the senior vice president for health-care policy at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, a tax-preparation company. The IRS has no mechanism in place yet to even accept individual mandate penalties and hasn’t even published the tables taxpayers will use to work out how much they owe. Plus, any money sent in can’t be earmarked especially for that, he explained. The IRS didn’t respond to a request for additional information about collecting mandate penalties. Drudge didn’t respond to an email asking him to elaborate on his tweet.

“For whatever reason, Matt Drudge has decided to give the government an interest-free loan,” Haile said.

Odd move for a small-government, anti-tax guy to make.

UPDATE: Drudge followed up on his earlier tweet and seems to confirm that he paid estimated taxes for the first quarter of this year on Friday. The mandate penalty nevertheless is separate from income taxes and isn’t due until 2015.

What is this nonsense about the IRS not having a “mechanism” to collect estimated taxes? If anyone thinks that Drudge’s pre-payment of the “shared responsibility payment” he estimates he will owe is going to get returned, because the IRS has “no mechanism” to accept the money, then put on a dunce cap and leave the room now. Drudge is going to owe this money, but as long as Obama and his Treasury Department folks leave the regulation quoted above in effect, he won’t be penalized.

Here’s how Tumulty handled people who tried to explain all this to her:

BZZZZZT! We’re not talking about the mandate on small businesses, Ms. Tumulty. We’re talking about the individual mandate, and the fact that sole proprietors have to pay estimated taxes. When I tried to explain this to her, I checked her Twitter feed for subsequent tweets and found this:

Thanks for being engaged, arrogant Big Media person.

Note that not a single one of the lefties correctly identified the real reason why Drudge might not have to pay now. One of them (TPM) totally mixed up the employer mandate and the responsibility of the sole proprietor to pay estimated taxes, and the other (HuffPo) absurdly stated that he could not pre-pay the ObamaCare payment because there is “no mechanism” for the IRS to accept it. It falls to a schlub blogger in the South Bay of Los Angeles to point out the reason that these people may accidentally be right.

If I were Drudge, I think I would pay it anyway. They could always repeal the regulation later, without my learning about it, and use the rule to audit and penalize me. A year’s worth of interest on $3000 (a guess as to Drudge’s estimated ObamaCare payment) is nothing compared to the peace of mind Drudge will have, knowing that he’s paying what he eventually will have to pay anyway, and that if they are going to audit him they will have to find a different excuse.

If you made it all the way to the end of this post, congratulations. The messiness of the different laws and regulations mean that it takes time to explain all this accurately. But I take pride in distinguishing myself from those in Big Media, who simply jump to conclusions based on absurd premises, and move on to discussing daffodils. If they ever read this post, their reaction will be: “See? I was right all along!”

This is the caliber of analysis you’re getting from your lefty media. Be proud. Be very proud.

UPDATE: Matt Boyle at Breitbart has half the story: he explains about the 1040-ES worksheet showing the lefties’ analysis is wrong, but does not have the regulation that shows the lefties’ conclusion is still right. There are almost 15,000 comments on his post. I bet this post does not get that many.

UPDATE x2: The TPM post’s author beclowns himself on Twitter:

Dude, stop it. You’re embarrassing yourself.

79 Responses to “Lefties Totally Goof Up Story on Matt Drudge’s Payment of the ObamaCare “Liberty Tax””

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. Karen Tumulty does not exactly have a reputation for being the sharpest knife in the drawer.

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  3. If only Karen Tumultuous were as obsessed with finding out what happened with Benghazi or the IRS, as she is with…Matt Drudge’s tax forms.

    Winning !

    Elephant Stone (6a6f37)

  4. Isn’t Karen the definition of being TooMulty Culty ?

    Alastor (2e7f9f)

  5. UPDATE: Matt Boyle at Breitbart has half the story: he explains about the 1040-ES worksheet showing the lefties’ analysis is wrong, but does not have the regulation that shows the lefties’ conclusion is still right. There are almost 15,000 comments on his post. I bet this post does not get that many.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  6. Minor clarification. “Sole proprietors” are not the only small business owners required to pay estimated taxes. Principal owners of S-Corporations and LLC’s typically have to pay these taxes ahead of time as well (like me!).

    Morgen (9e6647)

  7. I think Tumulty is a pretty ripe petunia all by herself…

    Colonel Haiku (f4b9a2)

  8. Morgen,

    The post does quote an IRS publication as saying: “If you are filing as a sole proprietor, partner, S corporation shareholder, and/or a self-employed individual. . .”

    I am using “sole proprietor” as shorthand.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  9. I pay estimated taxes, Mr. Frey. You are quite correct on all your points in IMO. Not bad for a schlubb blogger! I know of this “loophole” and have opted to not include the extra tax in my ES payment.

    It is frustrating to have to endure all this commentary from people who know nothing of sole proprietorship. Of course, the appeal to authority in consulting (without providing accurate info) a “tax expert” is maddening as any business owner will tell you that each person’s situation is unique.

    felipe (6100bc)

  10. UPDATE x2: The TPM post’s author beclowns himself on Twitter:

    Dude, stop it. You’re embarrassing yourself.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  11. Morgen – Sole proprietor and S-Corps and LLC’s are not the only entities required to pay estimated taxes. Individuals pay quarterly estimated taxes for a variety of reasons but primarily if their payroll or other withholding is going to leave them with a large tax bill – called an underpayment of estimated taxes – at the time they eventually file their returns. The safe harbors for avoiding paying estimated taxes used to be a lot looser than they are today.

    Since Obamacare theoretically requires everyone to purchase health insurance this year, whether it is an old non-compliant policy, a new compliant policy, or else claim a hardship exemption or whatever other carveout the administration has created, if somebody deliberately elects not to purchase insurance and does not use a safe harbor they will owe a penalty if they decide to enforce the law.

    Accruing for it in quarterly estimates the way Drudge has is making a statement, since the penalty can only be collected out of tax refunds.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  12. Obama’s base doesn’t pay estimated taxes. They do however, closely estimate their welfare handouts.

    Perfectsense (4d5c72)

  13. felipe – Estimated taxes suck. I paid them even when I wasn’t self-employed or an independent contractor.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  14. I followed this for a while last night on TPM but had to stop. It was just too painful and my eyes got tired from rolling.
    For Tumulty to enter the fray without even knowing what issue is being discussed is just silly. Typical. And silly.

    elissa (94cb27)

  15. “Obama’s base doesn’t pay estimated taxes.”

    Perfectsense – No, they cheat on their taxes, or at least his cabinet nominees do.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  16. Anyone who earns income from investments knows that quarterly payments on this earned income must be paid to the IRS during the year they are earned.

    Your analysis is 100% on-target.

    The question I have is: is it really the case that nobody involved with these stories have this sort of involvement with the investment world? Or do they realize that their readers are unlikely to be so involved?

    Pious Agnostic (ac89e5)

  17. Excellent treatment of the relevant facts. I understand TPM and HuffPo being quick to pounce on Drudge, but find Ms. Tumulty’s participation to be instructive. Big media has a responsibility to the public and she clearly failed.

    Also interesting was the fact that a WH communications flack called Drudge’s comment “a flat lie”.

    Thank you for your hard work on this and the earlier interaction

    Michael aka @Nel_Mezzo

    Nel_Mezzo (b13c66)

  18. The TPM beclowner also suggests in his headline that Drudge called the penalty “huge”. I don’t see Drudge characterizing the size of the penalty at all – only that he paid it.

    In a single headline he calls Drudge a probable liar, while totally lying himself about what Drudge said.

    What a nasty douchejerk.

    Groty (cdffcc)

  19. Thanks Nel_Mezzo. I hope you and other new folks stick around the blog, provide tips, comment, etc,

    Patterico (9c670f)

  20. 1% of Mr. Drudge’s income is a lot of pop tarts

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  21. One intrepid soul last night at TPM valiantly tried to explain the basics that not every taxpaying earner gets a W-2. That not everyone has a employer that takes money off the top of the worker’s paycheck each pay period and ships it off to the IRS to keep them current. Hence, some payers must do estimated taxes and make quarterly payments to the IRS during current tax year–which serves the same function. A few seemed to get at least that far but most did not. It was shocking.

    elissa (94cb27)

  22. Regardless of whether there is a penalty, Drudge will have to pay an extra 1% of his income because of Obamacare tax. So lets say Drudge earns $1,000,000 per year. That’s $10K of tax liability. It makes sense for Drudge to split that into four $2500 quarterly payments. And indeed it’s right there spelled out on the 1040-ES form!

    tim hughes (ed108e)

  23. Raaaaacists!

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  24. And furthermore….

    This Jesse Lee is an official White House spokesman.

    Calling out a private citizen “flat out lie” shows how out of control the federal government has become.

    I don’t recall these personal attacks on private citizens happening with any previous admins.

    tim hughes (ed108e)

  25. There likely aren’t very many left wing journalists on Team Obama who’ve been self-employed (drug-dealing and prostitution don’t count !)and therefore they’re unfamiliar with how self-employed folks pay their federal income taxes.

    Elephant Stone (108847)

  26. If Karen Tumulty and Dylan Scott were in the NCAA Tournament, they’d each be the #16 seed in their respective region.

    Winning ! Losing !

    Elephant Stone (108847)

  27. These left wing kooks don’t just limit their Madness and hysteria to the month of March—they bring it every month.

    Elephant Stone (108847)

  28. You’re not paying attention.

    Liberals don’t pay taxes. That’s why they don’t know about stuff like that.

    Taxes are for the little people.

    jakee308 (7a57ce)

  29. They passed the bill and they still don’t know what’s in it.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  30. Looks like another tax audit for Matt Drudge.

    Kevin M (dbcba4)

  31. Oh and don’t you love the weaselly “(Probably)” inserted to cover their butts from a lawsuit?

    jakee308 (7a57ce)

  32. If I were Drudge, I think I would pay it anyway. They could always repeal the regulation later, without my learning about it, and use the rule to audit and penalize me. A year’s worth of interest on $3000 (a guess as to Drudge’s estimated ObamaCare payment) is nothing compared to the peace of mind Drudge will have, knowing that he’s paying what he eventually will have to pay anyway, and that if they are going to audit him they will have to find a different excuse.

    Really? I think it is pretty obvious he is paying as early as possible as a publicity stunt. The penalty for underpayment of estimated tax is just interest on the late payments and would not large on $3000. And there is no way the IRS would offer it as justification for an audit, this would a total PR disaster. As it is the law seriously restricts what the IRS can do to collect the mandate tax.

    James B. Shearer (9233b4)

  33. These are the same people who are pitching a $15.00/hr. minimum wage. Any wonder why small business is so screwed ? And they control the entire nation and media. Hopeless.

    dc (685527)

  34. What totally upsets me this year is the increased SE tax I have to pay!

    Schedule SE 2012:
    tax rate on all income up to $110,100 = 13.3% ($11,450.40)

    Schedule SE 2013:

    tax rate on all income up to $113,700 = 15.3% ($14,643.30)

    I guess I should be thankful that the rate for the next level is still 2.9%

    Two more percentage points! And that is before I get to pay my regular taxes on my profits from doing business! I’m already experiencing hope and change!

    felipe (6100bc)

  35. Meanwhile, those honest, penny-pinching Obamas are calling their vacation in China a “cultural exchange,” so that they can avoid having to pay for any of it.
    If it were classified as a “vacation,” then they’d have to pick up the tab for the hotel and food.

    Integrity !
    Or something.

    Elephant Stone (108847)

  36. Early as possible, James? Drudge and I are paying our ES as required by the IRS; “on time” in their words. Some “publicity stunt”. He is complying with the law and you question his motive? If you had said that Drudge had crowed about paying the “Liberty Tax” being a publicity stunt, maybe I would have agreed with you.

    felipe (6100bc)

  37. In order to get bad publicity, it would have to be publicized, n’est pas?

    Pious Agnostic (ac89e5)

  38. Jimmy B. Shearer,

    We would say that a President who goes on ESPN, as well as The Ellen DeGeneres Show, in order to use celebrities to encourage low information citizens to “get covered” is the person who is doing a publicity stunt.

    In fact, his entire presidency has been a stunt.
    The kind of stunt that requires a disclaimer that might say, “Hey, don’t try this at home ! Leave it to the professional amateurs such as President Barack O’Drama.”

    Elephant Stone (108847)

  39. “I guess I should be thankful that the rate for the next level is still 2.9%”

    That should read “an additional 2.9%”

    While I am at it:

    $110,100 X .133 is $14,643.30
    $113,700 X .153 is $17,396.10

    That is what I get for angry typing!

    felipe (6100bc)

  40. “Really?” Yes, really. Bring your A game, Shearer.

    Colonel Haiku (f4b9a2)

  41. ==And there is no way the IRS would offer it as justification for an audit, this would (be) a total PR disaster.==

    I spit out a mouthful of water at that one, James. Have you been reading about any of the dicumented instances of IRS abuse of audits in the past few years, James? Worrying about “PR” really does not seem to be at the top of their list.

    elissa (94cb27)

  42. PA – I think what James is suggesting is that reminding people that there is a penalty for not purchasing affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable affordable care insurance is bad publicity for Democrats.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  43. I think if one of Obama’s appointees were to declare that they had just paid their taxes, then we could all say “really”?

    felipe (6100bc)

  44. “any of the dicumented dickumented instances”

    FTFY, elissa.

    felipe (6100bc)

  45. yes, filipe–that’s an excellent way to fix my typo.

    elissa (94cb27)

  46. ==This Jesse Lee is an official White House spokesman.
    Calling out a private citizen “flat out lie” shows how out of control the federal government has become.I don’t recall these personal attacks on private citizens happening with any previous admins.
    Comment by tim hughes (ed108e) — 3/22/2014 @ 4:22 pm==

    These characters do not consider themselves to be “the federal government”. They are, and will always be, and will always act like OFA drones–not public servants.

    elissa (94cb27)

  47. This sounds like an ad for tax reform.

    Jim C (35d712)

  48. Math and Lefties, it’s that old Oil & Water thingy!

    askeptic (2bb434)

  49. here likely aren’t very many left wing journalists on Team Obama who’ve been self-employed (drug-dealing and prostitution don’t count !)and therefore they’re unfamiliar with how self-employed folks pay their federal income taxes.

    Well, if cheating on taxes is good enough for the Secretary of the Treasury, it’s good enough for me.

    Well, he did apologize, after he got caught.

    MikeK (cd7278)

  50. Since I pay quarterly estimated tax payments – as I am a self employed attorney via an LLC owned by myself and my law partner – I find it astonishing that people are so utterly ignorant about basic tax practice on self employed and small businessmen.

    People that consider themselves “expert” enough to call Drudge a “liar”.

    Bunch of goddamn useless screwoffs – that’s what we have for “reporters”.

    SPQR (768505)

  51. You can not ever make leftist happy. They complain and call you a racist when you do not want to pay so others do have too.

    They call you hateful and mean names when you are reluctant to embrace their agenda of redistribution.

    And now they get mad when an honest taxpayer makes an early contribution to treasury.

    Remind which tax leftists do not support?

    You can not make these people happy.

    highpockets (ad576c)

  52. ” And there is no way the IRS would offer it as justification for an audit, this would a total PR disaster.”

    You’ve been paying no attention at all for how many years now, Shearer?

    SPQR (768505)

  53. Really? I think it is pretty obvious he is paying as early as possible as a publicity stunt. The penalty for underpayment of estimated tax is just interest on the late payments and would not large on $3000. And there is no way the IRS would offer it as justification for an audit, this would a total PR disaster.

    Maybe he doesn’t want to pay the $315 that 10% interest compounded daily for a year would represent. Maybe he doesn’t have the same confidence you have that the Obama administration would not target him for an audit, given the brazen way they have targeted so many other Obama critics under suspicious circumstances.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  54. I have to laugh at the idea that the IRS would give a tinker’s damn about bad publicity.

    JVW (9946b6)

  55. The left and right live in totally different worlds, JVW. That’s the only explanation.

    elissa (94cb27)

  56. The lefties’ understanding of the topic is laughable.

    The word “lefties” makes the left sound somehow quaint and adorable, even humane and compassionate. Far too many liberals are anything but that, and the two-faced stunt they’re pulling with people like Matt Drudge is merely another illustration of that.

    Here’s another description of what “lefties” are doing…

    Examiner.com, March 20, 2014: An “ex-spook” as they are known, in other words a retired member of the CIA, stated concerning the effort to destroy the U.S., “You have no idea how bad it is.” The enemies of freedom and the Constitution within the country, he said, have now succeeded in putting most of their goals in place. “Think of how far they have come since 2008,” he continued, “Most Americans don’t even recognize their own country anymore. They feel like foreigners in their own land.”

    “If we continue down the present path,” he concluded, “Our liberties will be dust in the wind by 2016. These people are organized, relentless, persistent, and dangerous. And they have been at it since the early 1900s.”

    The former agent did not wish to be more specific about what he knows due to the fact that if he did so, it would be easy enough to figure out his identity based upon the in-depth knowledge he has of certain facts.

    These “enemies within” are generally known as progressives, although the term has fallen in and out of vogue based upon changing perceptions of the public. Progressives are known under a variety of names. Liberals, collectivists, statists, Marxists, neo-Marxists, socialists, and “democratic consensus builders” are some of the more common terms that people who stand for freedom and liberty have used to describe progressives. But it all boils down to the same thing. In order for them to achieve their self-described utopia, human freedom and liberty must be severely restricted and controlled, and the power of the centralized government must be greatly strengthened.

    Mark (cc48f8)

  57. Taxes are only for Republicans and conservatives.

    Seems to me some of those Libs should have known about the 1040 ES, I sure did and I sure saw the ACA portion directing me to pay the “other taxes”. I have not filed yet, but I suspect my CPA is going to fill in something in that otherwise blank line.

    DoverPro (504700)

  58. Matt Drudge is a mega corporation with thousands of employees from coast to coast. Funded by the Koch brothers ad Amway. That’s how he scoops the media.

    The secret is out!

    Christoph Dollis (6e026c)

  59. “dickumented”: added to the Obama vocabulary.

    navyvet (aca3d3)

  60. On a side note: Official WH spokesman’s tweet about Drudge,

    Jesse Lee, the Director of Progressive Media at Barack Obama’s White House, responded that that was a “Flat lie, no fee for previous year,” adding, “Scary how much influence he once had.”

    In 2009, he posted at the official WH site a post titled Reality Check: Turning a Point of Pride into a Moment of Shame:

    Last night Fox News continued its disregard for the facts in an attempt to smear the Administration’s efforts to win the Olympics for the United States. In the past, hosting the Olympics has been a source of pride and unity for the country, but once again Fox News’ Glenn Beck program has shown that nothing is worthy of respect if it can be used as part of a partisan attack to boost ratings.

    Pot. Kettle.

    Dana (9a8f57)

  61. Matt Drudge, of course, wasn’t being very clear and slightly mis-stated the facts.

    Sammy Finkelman (798a49)

  62. What wasn’t clear?

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  63. Good Allah, Sammy.

    JD (5c1832)

  64. Jesse Lee, the Director of Progressive Media at Barack Obama’s White House, responded that that was a “Flat lie, no fee for previous year,” adding, “Scary how much influence he once had.”

    The thing about apparatchiks is that they are so damn humorless. And stupid. An intelligent WH mouthpiece would have said, “The tax is not due until April 15, 2015, but if Mr. Drudge wants to pay it now, the United States Treasury thanks him and reminds him that he may be pay even more if he wishes”. And just defused the whole thing.

    nk (dbc370)

  65. nk,

    He may be humorless, but I don’t think he’s stupid. I think his intent, first and foremost, was to impugn Drudge’s reputation and credibility. Also, he endeavored to shield the WH from critics, whether directly or indirectly.

    Most interesting, however, was his last comment,“Scary how much influence he once had.” Past tense: In one fell swoop, he is letting readers know that Drudge is a has-been, a liar, non-influential, and now that he has been fully discredited, irrelevant.

    IOW, the WH is afraid of Drudge.

    Dana (9a8f57)

  66. Yahoo has “drudge accused of lying” as one of their lead stories up tonite. Quelle surprise! Some dude name Eric Pfeiffer wrote it for a site called Sideshow. His headline is “writer caught in debate”.

    elissa (94cb27)

  67. #50… what SPQR said. These people are reporters who have had their brains bashed out. Total embarrassment.

    Colonel Haiku (f4b9a2)

  68. 62. Comment by Ag80 (eb6ffa) — 3/22/2014 @ 8:04 pm

    What wasn’t clear?

    He didn’t explain (at first – and to some people even later) that the “Obamacare penalty” he just paid was something he added to his estimated taxes for 2014 (first quarter) not 2013 taxes.

    Sammy Finkelman (798a49)

  69. Comment by DoverPro (504700) — 3/22/2014 @ 7:19 pm

    Seems to me some of those Libs should have known about the 1040 ES,

    Not a lot of people, and if they did, it didn’t hit them.

    I sure did and I sure saw the ACA portion directing me to pay the “other taxes”.

    No, it’s not directing people to pay it.

    Sammy Finkelman (798a49)

  70. As a small business owner, I would like to add that first quarter estimated tax is not due until April 15. Mr. Drudge is actually getting ahead of things by paying now. I suppose you can pay early if you have a good idea what your first quarter income is, but it is uncommon to due so.

    Denver Todd (123e7a)

  71. Maybe he doesn’t want to pay the $315 that 10% interest compounded daily for a year would represent …

    The actual penalty is currently 3% simple interest. (DC charges 10% compounded daily, the federal government doesn’t).

    James B. Shearer (9233b4)

  72. But there is no penalty until the tax is due, and there is no tax due until all the facts are in.

    The Obamacare tax/penalty is not considerd regular income tax, and is excluded from estimated tax calculations.

    Drudge did this just so he could say it.

    Sammy Finkelman (798a49)

  73. 70. Matt Drudge wanted to be first!

    Sammy Finkelman (798a49)

  74. Ah, Sammy is as Sammy does.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y28pFJqDkkU

    Simon Jester (1af503)

  75. Drudge could be organized as a subchapter-s corporation, in which case his return was due March 15.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  76. 75. But let’s not let crucial facts interrupt the discussion. Sammy, please continue.

    gary gulrud (384f70)

  77. I went and read all of the timelines of Tumulty and the other MFM people involved. It is absolutely clear that in their rush to call Drudge a liar, not a one of them ever considered estimated quarterly taxes, not had any idea about the “other taxes”. Usually the MFM just ignores their asshattery, no corrections required on twitter. They will memory hole this, or claim they did know all along, though were that the case, they took great care to hide that during their tweets. And, if they did know, they went to great lengths to address everything except that, focusing on everything but the relevant metric. In short, Tumulty and the rest are lying liars.

    JD (5c1832)

  78. Comment by Denver Todd (123e7a) — 3/22/2014 @ 10:18 pm

    Dude, April 15 is the LAST day you can pay your es and be considered on time. You might think you are being “responsible” by paying on that date, if so, more power to you. But many business owners like myself pay before the last minute. It is not like filing and paying the state and local sales tax where you heed to wait until after the last business day of March to come up with a figure. But you knew that, right? I mean after all, you are a business owner.

    You should now what your 2014 es payments should be as soon as you do your 2013 books – I do mine before Jan 5.

    felipe (6100bc)

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