Thursday, November 6, 2008

Unpaid Obama Campaign Workers in Indianapolis

Apparently some Obama campaign workers in Indianapolis are getting stiffed for their last-minute campaign work leading up to the election. I won’t be disingenuous so as to blame Obama of any wrongdoing here…it is clearly the responsibility of the organization involved entitled “Vote Corps.” I Googled it…I Wiki’ed it. Nothing…nada…zilch. To not have a Web presence means that this organization is seriously grassroots…which means that it is either woefully disorganized or fraudulent. The truth is always somewhere in the middle it seems, but not having been there I won’t speculate. Sike! Yes I will…this seemingly unimportant story begs some other “big picture” questions.

Let’s start with the fact that the volunteers were paid with pre-paid Visa cards. Hmmm…I think that it’s safe to assume that no one at Vote Corps was planning to send out W-2’s to these folks so as to ensure that their payments were properly recorded with the Internal Revenue Service…especially since according to the video report, the group “no longer officially exists”. I guess if you open and close an operation within a tax year you have no obligation to report any monies paid for services to individuals who would have to report that as income. I think it is also safe to assume that none of these volunteers were going to consider this as reportable income to the IRS when they filed their taxes since, after all, payment was in the form of a credit card not actual money (whatever!).

But, as the story continues, the Vote Corps people eventually showed up and started paying people, but didn’t apparently pay all that was due them…and of course the organization said in effect, “the check is in the mail.” Again, I must ask --mismanagement or fraud? Time will tell.

Further evidence of the fact that these volunteers aren’t used to paying taxes came from their own words:

“They gave us $10 an hour. So we added it. I added up all the hours so it was supposed to be at least $120. All I get is $90,” said Charles Martin. Well Charles, if you paid taxes that would be about right…welcome to the real world. But alas you may be part of the 40% of the population that doesn’t pay any taxes so you wouldn’t of course be used to this sort of concept.

“It should have been $480. It’s $230,” said Imani Sankofa. Congratulations Imani you’ve been deemed to have made too much money at once…this would be the “windfall tax” that your president wants to impose on corporations and probably individuals later on.

If you think these folks are mad now, just wait until Obama doesn’t come through with sending them a tax refund for taxes they didn’t pay. Do you think that they’ll come knocking on our doors?

Here's another video story of the event.

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