What is Booker Hiding? Why?

Neither Booker nor Lonegan have been as forthcoming as Mendenez and Kyrillos were last year

© Jim Urquhart / Reuters;

© Jim Urquhart / Reuters;

Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Cory Booker has not released his tax returns, despite a promise to do so, according to the New York Post.

“We will release his tax returns,” vowed Booker campaign spokesman Kevin Griffis more than two weeks ago, yesterday claiming Booker “will continue to raise the bar on transparency — both in this election, and if elected, in the US Senate.”

GOP nominee Steve Lonegan provided three years of returns exclusively to The Post.  The paper said that Lonegan earned $515,280 in 2012, mostly from property sales, and paid nearly $100,000 in federal taxes.

Lonegan said Booker is refusing to release his returns because he used his office, Newark Mayor, to accumulate personal wealth.

“It’s indicative of the fact that he’s got something to hide,” Lonegan told The Post. “It’s clear to me that Booker leveraged the office of mayor . . . to gain wealth.”

The Post has previously reported that Booker received an undisclosed amount in an equity payout from the law firm he was a partner in before being elected mayor. The payout was made from 2007 through 2011.  During that time the firm, Trenk DiPasquale,  collected more than $2 million in fees from local agencies that Booker has direct influence over.

The New York Times reported in May that Booker has earned $1.3 million in speaking fees since becoming mayor and that his Newark home is assessed at $406,000. He earns a salary of $174,496 as mayor.

A review of Booker’s tax returns could also shed light on his financial relationship with the social media start up, Waywire, and his relationships with investors in the firm.

Neither Booker nor Lonegan have been as forthcoming with their tax returns as U.S. Senator Bob Menendez and State Senator Joe Kyrillos were last year in their senatorial campaign.

Both candidates made copies of their federal tax returns available to members of the media, including MMM, last year.  Reporters from the Associated Press, Star Ledger, The Record  and others, met at the candidates’ campaign to review the returns.  Spokespersons for the campaigns answered questions about the returns.

By revealing his tax returns to The Post, Lonegan has proven to be more transparent than Booker. Yet, showing the returns to one out of state reporter is insufficient.  Who knows if that one reporter knows how to read tax returns or what questions to ask?

Lonegan should make his returns available to any of member of the media who shows up at the appointed time, just like Menendez and Kryillos did last year, and make a knowledgeable staffer or the candidate himself, available to answer questions.  The media members should then keep pressure on Booker to do the same.



Posted: August 26th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: 2013 Election, Bob Menendez, Cory Booker, Joe Kyrillos, Media, Senate Special Election, Steve Lonegan | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments »

6 Comments on “What is Booker Hiding? Why?”

  1. BoredWalk Talk said at 1:28 pm on August 26th, 2013:

    Any reason to think that any notable margin of NJ voters would care or would vote differently if Booker was profiting from being the mayor of Newark?

  2. Joe Centonzi said at 7:31 pm on August 26th, 2013:

    Nope – which makes Lonegan’s campaign effort that much more pathetic. He refuses to accept that this state is lost forever to the conservative cause.

    Oh well.

  3. Draco said at 9:51 pm on August 26th, 2013:

    I’m glad someone hasn’t given up on a conservative Republican winning a US Senate seat in NJ. Sure, it’s an uphill battle, but if anyone can pull this off, it is Steve Lonegan and Rick Shaftan.

  4. MoreMonmouthMusings » Blog Archive » Cory Booker Wants You To Consider That He’s Gay said at 1:45 pm on August 27th, 2013:

    […] I would like to see his tax returns, though. […]

  5. Sal said at 2:33 pm on August 27th, 2013:

    This is just more of the same for the D’s. They SAY that they’ll be the most transparent politicians every but they never come through. Over and over, every election cycle.

  6. Joe Centonzi said at 7:22 pm on August 27th, 2013:

    “…but if anyone can pull this off, it is Steve Lonegan and Rick Shaftan.”

    Would this be the same Steve Lonegan who lost two campaigns for congress and one for governor? And are you referring to the same Rick Shaftan whose conniving political expertise couldn’t win him a seat on the GOP State Committee?