"Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom" Albert Einstein

"A dame who knows the ropes isn't likely to get tied up." Mae West

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Spousal rights

First of all, I must make a disclaimer: I am not supporting any presidential candidate. Period.

Areas of the blogosphere and other media are irate over the fact that Cindy McCain's tax returns were not publicly revealed along with her husband's. "John McCain's lack of transparency is troubling and raises questions about what he's hiding," Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean said .

Nevermind the fact that the McCain's hold investments each in their own names and even have a pre-nup agreement regarding their finances. Some groups estimate the McCain's "combined" wealth as $28-100 million. It appears to me that there is no "combined" wealth; it is "his" wealth and "her" wealth, separately. They may be married, but their finances are separate.

Cindy and John McCain's filing status is "married filing separately" and therefore, unlike other candidates who file joint tax returns, Mrs. McCain's tax records are not subject to public scrutiny. She is not running for public office and is not obligated to disclose her finances. The simple truth is that it is none of the public's business what the spouse of a candidate earns or owns. A bad example was set by Theresa Heinz Kerry when she released her private tax returns under political pressure.

Other candidates had the option to file their taxes separately, but apparently chose not to. As a result, the spouse's income on a candidate's joint return become public knowledge when the candidate's tax return is exposed. There is no "lack of transparency" on John McCain's part; his tax return was released as required.

It is surprising to me that antiquated ideas like this still abound in modern American society: that spouses can't/don't have their own investments; that, once married, spouses merge all their income; or even that spouses have the same opinions (political or otherwise).


Anonymous said...

Thank you! Why is the media/political machine so determined to include spouses in the race? Why can't the candidates stand alone. While a biography of a former first lady might make an interesting read (might) it doesn't make the campaign.

And good for her keeping separate finances. I always suggest to friends when they marry "Keep you money separate as long as you can and always have at least one account that's all yours." I think it makes for a happier marriage.

Catch Her in the Wry said...

What is interesting is that those most vocal about this issue are Democrats who think themselves progressive.

Crockhead said...

Hey, pg, I'm a Democrat, and I don't think Cindy McCain should have to disclose her finances if she and John have been filing separately, have their assets separated and have a pre-nuptial agreement. In fact, I would vote for Cindy McCain for anything she would choose to run for. As a matter of fact, even though I am a Barack Obama fan, if Michelle Obama were running against him, I would vote for her before I would for him. I think the first female president should be either Cindy McCain or Michelle Obama.

Catch Her in the Wry said...

crockhead: So you're saying you'd throw away all your political ideals for a pretty face?

Crockhead said...

I do have my standards. You didn't catch me saying I would vote for the Bush twins, for example. Nor Ann Coulter, although I would hardly call hers a pretty face.