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Kirk blasts Giannoulias for not releasing tax returns, disclosure report

Monday, May 24, 2010

* This tax returns, personal finance issue is hotter now in Illinois politics than I’ve ever seen it. And, ironically, we have the top of the ticket going opposite directions. Bill Brady defends his running mate’s refusal to release his tax returns while Mark Kirk blasts Giannoulias for holding out. From a press release…

The Kirk for Senate campaign today urged Illinois Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulias to release his 2009 income tax return and explain to Illinois voters why he filed last week for an extension on his U.S. Senate Financial Disclosure Report.

“While Congressman Kirk demonstrated his commitment to transparency and accountability by making his tax returns available and filing his annual financial disclosure on time, Alexi Giannoulias refuses to release any personal financial information covering the last calendar year,” Kirk campaign spokesperson Kirsten Kukowski said. “Federal law requires Mr. Giannoulias to disclose his personal financial information to the Secretary of the Senate. After reckless banking practices brought down Broadway Bank and cost the FDIC more than $390 million, Alexi owes the people of Illinois a full accounting.”

Last Monday, Congressman Mark Kirk filed his annual Financial Disclosure Report with both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. Earlier this year, Congressman Kirk made available his personal tax returns dating back to 1999.

In April, Mr. Giannoulias announced he had filed for an extension on his 2009 personal tax return but refused to disclose when he would make his tax information available to the media. Mr. Giannoulias’ U.S. Senate Financial Disclosure Report extension is available upon request.

I asked the Giannoulias campaign for a statement, and here it is…

“Republican Congressman Mark Kirk, who served in Congress for over 10 years, did not release his tax returns until we pressured him to – and still he would only release his tax returns for an in-person 15 minute review at his campaign office. In short, he can spare us the lecture.

“As he has already done every year he has served in elective office, Alexi Giannoulias will release his tax and economic interest disclosure information fully and publicly as soon as they are filed. As Congressman Kirk’s campaign knows already, Alexi has requested an extension to ensure an accurate picture of his personal finances, which have dramatically changed since the sale of his father’s business.

“All of Alexi’s information will be filed and publicly disclosed prior to Election Day.”

“Prior to election day” could mean anything, but there you have it.

* Also, I’m told we may hear more from Lisa Madigan’s campaign on her tax return issue later today or tomorrow. No response yet from her opponent, either.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Fed up - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 2:59 pm:

    I would really like to see mike Madigans and John Cullertons tax returns. Both of them make huge money outside of thier state paychecks. I wonder how much of those moneys could be tied back to their postions in state goverment

  2. - Vote Quimby! - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:00 pm:

    Jason….hear that clock ticking?

  3. - Responsa - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:03 pm:

    What a weak and pathetic comeback. Yeah, you bet we pressured him, but nah, we ain’t gonna do it ourselves until we feel like it. So?? (Umbrage doesn’t look good on you, Alexi.)

  4. - OneMan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:15 pm:

    We had to file an extension because it’s so complicated…. You know who else had to file an extension all the time?

  5. - Brennan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:16 pm:

    I’m crushed that Giannoulias didn’t have a Bush reference.

  6. - fedup dem - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:19 pm:

    You mean Lisa actually has an opponent???

  7. - OneMan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:19 pm:

    That’s it…

    It’s wall street’s and BP’s fault Alexi needed an extension.

  8. - Eternal optimist - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:19 pm:

    It is pretty normal to file an extension on a complicated tax return, but it will be interesting to see just how much prior the “prior to election day” is

  9. - rocket - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:26 pm:

    Some people always file an extentsion. I haven’t filed before October in 10 years. In fact, I dont even have all my K-1’s yet, so I cant file.
    what te big deal?

  10. - Bakersfield - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:32 pm:

    Dumbest. Issue. Ever.

    If pols dont want to deal with this, move the primary back to May like normal states. I guarantee this is not a 3 week story if there was not 9 months between elections.

  11. - JP - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:33 pm:

    More to the point about why does every pol in IL have to release their tax returns? It’s because they don’t have anything to say anymore. Alexi and Kirk are not that different on the issues. Not like anyone is going to do anything in the Senate in their first term. Simon and Quinn have nothing to say other than the state has gone to hell in a hand basket. The ONLY thing to talk about is tax returns. Hopefully the electorate will be grown up enough to see that it’s a smoke screen, just like Ald. Burke “recusing” himself from his client’s business in front of the Council.

  12. - OneMan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:36 pm:

    Folks running for office are not ’some people’ …

    Funny how the President of the United States is able to file on time…

  13. - Bakersfield - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:39 pm:

    Also, what has been more atrocious- the reporting on this iosue (aside from this site) or the way the campaign’s are handling this issue? No one calls Quinn out for doing exactly what Brady did, no one thinks to ask LM, and then when someone does they respond by attacking Brady for refusing to do something they wont do.
    Oh, and then Kirk could have run this out 3 weeks ago to help out Brady, but waited until today’s “tax return avalanche” which then further highlighted Plummer’s mistakes on this issue.

    My head hurts, can we please move onto something more important?

  14. - Rich Miller - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:41 pm:

    ===can we please move onto something more important? ===

    Considering that the two governors who hemmed and hawed the most on revealing their tax returns were George Ryan and Rod Blagojevich, this is a pretty important issue.

  15. - downhereforyears - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:41 pm:

    Actually the closer to election day he files the better it might be for Kirk. The story will be months old by then and his returns might very well be the time bomb that catapults it into the spotlight again. I for one would prefer that he publicly disclose them around he 2nd week in October. Thanks Alexi!

  16. - Bakersfield - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:43 pm:

    But both have released them (kinda)- and in the grand scheme of things going on in Springfield/Chicago/DC this is tiny potatoes.

    How soon until people running for city council start demanding opponents release returns?

  17. - rocket - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:46 pm:

    just saying filing in April isnt always in your control. there are a myriad of reasons why people cant file timely, and there’s nothing wrong with it either.

  18. - Responsa - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 3:55 pm:

    Rocket, maybe the IRS can create a new form for these specific situations. Call it “Extention to File Until After the Election”

  19. - rocket - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 4:00 pm:

    the law gives the ability to file an extension until October, and millions use it, why should when somebody files their tax returns have any bearing on how we vote. when he files he will release, he has always released in the past, unlike others, Madigan, who never have released.

  20. - Brennan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 4:05 pm:

    Did Madigan show her docs to any in the press?

    I seem to recall that Giannoulias gave WBEZ a peak inside the ironclad fortress.

  21. - shore - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 4:26 pm:

    Kirk has been in public life for 30 years and for the last 10 as congressman where they put their tax returns online.

    what would be REALLY interesting is if state legislators were held to the same public disclosure standards as congressman. Hello, legislature and conflict of interest.

  22. - just sayin' - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 4:34 pm:

    It’s hard to say who is the most hypocritical and ridiculous on this tax return issue. But Mark Kirk is definitely in the running with Plummer and the Madigans for the prize.

    I hope Lisa releases her’s, thereby putting even more pressure on Plummer.

  23. - downstater - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 4:58 pm:

    I’ve had to file an extension for the last six years. If you have even a small owernship in different entities, the return can get fairly complicated. My return typically runs more than 100 pages.

    The returns should be released, but when a person like Plummer or Alexi claim they are filing an extension…..I can sympathise with them.

    Give them till August, and then you can turn up the heat. Otherwise, both sides that try to raise a tax extention as evidence of an illegal enterpriese, look naive.

  24. - Fed up - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 5:16 pm:

    Just sayin. Yeah because Quinn just giving a peek and alexi sayin can’t do it yet is not the same. Has Quinn Simon every had a real job. At least alexi can claim getting his money out of the family bank before it imploded was complicated so it might take a while.

  25. - Anonymous - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 6:03 pm:

    CFB, this is coming from the same guy who said we’ll talk about Broadway Way bank issue AFTER the primary.
    As a Democrat, I have never seen a more disappointing candidate. A candidate that is so in over his head. A candidate that ran as a banker in 2006 and then pretended he never heard of his family’s failed business. And to those defenders, 95 percent of “small community banks” are still up and running.
    When you’re in bed with garbage, you’ll get dirty.

  26. - Nero - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 7:05 pm:

    This tax disclosure issue will have ZERO relevance in the election… frankly it borders on childish antics and it turns off voters.

  27. - Hipster - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 8:15 pm:

    Rich, Kirk has been in Congress for LESS than ten years. Why didn’t you fact-check Alexi’s campaign statement?

  28. - wordslinger - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 10:21 pm:

    I’ve changed my mind on this. The Brady situation was an eye-opener for me. I didn’t really think anyone running for gov. in a big state like Illinois could think it was politically viable to be that hypocritical. But you learn….

    This might be an issue the goo-goos could ride. How about mandated releases for constitutional officers, Speaker, Senate pres. and minority leaders? If they run the show, maybe we should see who their paymasters are.

  29. - Enough already - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 10:25 pm:

    Kirk’s advisors are obviously telling him to attack Giannoulias for everything. And extension is no big deal and he’s released all his previous returns. Kirk’s relentless attacks are getting silly and tiresome.

    I thought he was supposed to be so high class and thoughtful. Looks more like another mud slinging pol.

  30. - The REAL Anonymous fka Anonymous - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 10:48 pm:

    Bakersfield: If we could rely on/trust others to treat US as we treat them, you probably would not have a headache right now.

  31. - Brennan - Monday, May 24, 10 @ 11:30 pm:

    =If they run the show, maybe we should see who their paymasters are=

    And their finance team? Why are they any different than the candidate? They’re name isn’t on the ballot, but they are raising big bucks to see them elected. Is it all because they are true believers in the candidate or are they a couple of Tony Rezkos or Chris Kellys?

  32. - anno--mus - Tuesday, May 25, 10 @ 7:05 am:

    Well let’s just make everyone in gov’t expose their tax returns & make it a “condition of employment”. That will solve this ongoing interest by some in what people make & who they may think have avoided taxes ect., ect. thus satisfying everyone’s curious inquiry. They have to file “Statements of Economic Interests” yearly , even into the middle management ranks, so why not ?
    Then, finally, we can hear from those in charge & those who want to be in charge how they intend to straighten out the states serious issues { and there is a load of them} & the up side down finances as there is about a 14 billion dollar plus hole yet to fill in this fiscal years budget with just over 30 days left in FY-10, how to pay providers & vendors who aren’t being paid literally for as much as 6 months plus & shutting the state off, services slowed or modified or discontinued and other things that matter & oh yes with still no FY-11 budget yet in sight.
    If those mentioned in these various reports over the past weeks, Democrats, Republicans or Independents filed their income taxes,business taxes ect., took whatever advantages of provisions in those codes & the IRS hasn’t “come a callin’” & the Ill. Dept. of Revenue hasn’t either ; what’s the real issue . We don’t know their personal issues, losses or business problems only speculate.
    If you don’t like these people because of the tax thing or just don’t like them for really no reason at all …don’t vote for them in November.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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