MADISON, Wis. — In a news report revealing he paid no state income taxes in 2002, 2003, 2004 or 2005, a spokesperson for Wisconsin Congressional Representative Tom Petri laid the blame at the feet of 9/11 terrorists, a claim termed “outrageous and insulting” to working people by One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross.
Ross said, “Rep. Petri’s blaming terrorists for his not paying a dime in state income taxes for four straight years is outrageous and insulting to every single hard working Wisconsinite that plays by the rules and pays their state taxes.”
Rep. Petri, consistently ranked as one of the wealthiest members of the U.S. House, would have been paid over $600,000 in taxpayer funded salary and reported multi-million net worth during the same four year time period in which he paid no state income taxes. According to his spokesperson, Petri’s assets in the foreign investment market Lloyd’s of London, which ranged from $250,000 to $1,000,000, suffered losses following the 9/11 attacks.
Ross noted the absence of Petri’s state income tax was emblematic of thirty years of Republican tax policy favoring wealthy investors over middle class and working families and that the tax policies being advocated by the GOP presidential ticket of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan would tip the scales even further in favor of the investment income that fuels the fortunes of the ultra-wealthy.
He concluded, “Rep. Petri’s blaming 9/11 for how he avoided taxes is shameless. But the real culprit is thirty years of Republican tax policy that benefits rich investors over hard-working middle class Americans and the real outrage is Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan trying to sell us more of the same.”