Costly Present

Congress returns its tax break

What is Christmas without gifts? So apparently thought the members of the U.S. House and Senate last December when they quietly voted to give themselves a tax break: an automatic deduction of $75 for living expenses each day Congress meets during the year. Members could take advantage of the deduction even on days they were not in Washington, as long as at least a few of their colleagues were in session. That bit of self-beneficence raised the annual tax deduction to which members are entitled from $3,000 to about $20,000.

But as often happens, the gifts one chooses...

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