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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Forbes: Rubio's Olympic bill, which Obama supports, is 'gold medal stupidity'



A writer for Forbes thinks Sen. Marco Rubio, and by extension, President Obama is pandering with his bill to eliminate taxes on prize earnings for U.S. Olympic medal winners. 

President Obama and conservative GOP Sen. Marco Rubio agree: Olympic medals and the cash awards that go with them should be tax-exempt. This is the dumbest idea of the summer—and in our overheated campaign season, that’s saying something. ...

Let’s not kid ourselves, the Olympics is big business. Paying athletes performance bonuses for winning medals is no less commercial than anything else the Olympic bosses do. But why this extra cash should be tax-free escapes me. At least hedge fund operators have to pay capital gains taxes on their bonuses.

As my colleague Eric Toder reminds me, there once was a time when this sort of special tax treatment was slipped into revenue bills by high-paid lobbyists in the dark of night. Now, the code has been so corrupted that pols propose this junk without even being asked. For that, I suppose, they deserve the gold medal of stupid tax tricks. (full story here)

The piece cites a Politifact item that concluded the tax issue was overstated.

[Last modified: Tuesday, August 7, 2012 10:12pm]


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