Abel Maldonado’s mounting tax troubles

October 25, 2012

Abel Maldonado

Note: this story first appeared in Noozhawk, an online news source in Santa Barbara County.

By Gina Potthoff, Noozhawk Staff Writer

Congressional candidate Abel Maldonado raised thousands of dollars for a state re-election bid during a party that his family’s business later falsely claimed as a business expense on its tax returns, according to records.

The tax infraction stemming from a 2007 event is the latest in a months-long sparring over tax controversies involving the two contenders for California’s 24th Congressional District. Challenger Maldonado, a Republican, faces longtime incumbent Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, in the highly contested Nov. 6 race.

Capps has been accused of failing to report rental income from a staffer living in her residence, and Maldonado’s family farming business is still in a tax dispute with the Internal Revenue Service over millions of dollars in deductions.

IRS records also show that Maldonado’s family company, Agro-Jal Farming Enterprises Inc., tried to write off the $3,686.03 catering fee of a party held Dec. 5, 2007.

The IRS denied that write-off because the party, which was hosted at the Shell Beach residence of Maldonado’s father, Frank, may have been a political fundraiser that didn’t qualify as a business expense.

According to California campaign finance records, Maldonado raised $35,000 at the 2007 party.

When Maldonado was asked to provide documentation with the names of each of the guests and their business relationships with taxpayers, Maldonado provided only a list of guest initials and their occupations.

“This party could have just as easily pertained to his political career rather than any business of the taxpayer,” according to IRS documents. “It has been well established that the corporation had deducted expenditures on a number of occasions in 2006 and 2007 that had nothing to do with the corporation’s business.”

Maldonado, who most recently served as the state’s lieutenant governor, said in a statement that his family is complying fully with the IRS.

“It’s no secret that my family’s farming business is in the middle of a dispute, but I want to make one thing perfectly clear,” Maldonado said. “Despite what is being said on dishonest TV ads, the IRS isn’t suing me, I’m suing the IRS. This dispute is currently being litigated, and the only thing I am going to say is that when this matter is resolved — and no one wants it resolved quicker than I do — I will abide by the findings. If that means I need to pay additional taxes, then I will just as I’ve always done. If there are forms that I have to file with state agencies, I will be happy to comply. It’s that simple.”


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Easy choice. Abel is a Republican who wants to cut the very services he and his peers depend on. Capps is a Democrat who wants to raise taxes on the better off to pay for service that many working class, elderly, and young people depend on..

Of course, sometimes I almost wish Abel and his buddies would get elected so they could turn California into a paradise like Alabama or Mississippi, then maybe a few people would wake up. But no, the pain would be too great and many would still find imaginary fairies to blame even then.

Just remember, it was Abel Maldonado that pimped out his vote to place the open primary initiative on the ballot. That’s why we only get to choose between dumb and dumber. I guess we all have to decide who’s the winner of dumb. Actually, you, the voters, win that category. You keep voting for stupid stuff, like high speed rail, Jerry Brown stain, Barbara botox Boxer, Diane-no debate-not so-fineStein, Obama. Boy California – ya sure can pick-em. You all are so lame you keep voting the same losers into office and expect different results each time. I seem to recall someone saying “that’s the definition of insanity”.

Just remember that a vote for Capps is a vote for Obama. Capps’ son in law is Bill Burton who followed Obama in from Chicago and was a White House Press secretary. He is now the head of an Obama PAC–the same PAC that ran the ad implying that Romney killed a woman who had cancer and died.

Just remember that a vote for Maldonado is a vote for Romney. I am in awe of the short attention span of some Americans. George Dubya and Company, Raped and Pillaged America while their friends got rich. D!CK Chaney’s Haliburton was given all the governments “No Bid” contracts and made sure the middle class was almost wiped out. If you were paying any attention the Bush years were unbelievably and unabashedly the most courpt in United States history. The super right wing extremists are for legal theivery with no regard for humanity, environment or morality. They cry trillions of dollars spent on America yet somehow forgot that under Dubyas watch the Pentegon “misplaced” 2.3 TRILLION dollars. Why did we forget that news conference? Because the next day was 9-11. If you have never seen Rumsfelds news conference on 9-10 wake up! http://youtu.be/xU4GdHLUHwU

Without Obama for the last 4 years, the economy would have tanked far sooner and far worse. We should all be thankful it hasn’t been worse, but some of us only see the glass half-empty when a Democratic president is in power and then delude ourselves when power shifts to the other party that somehow things are finally looking rosy. Then after another 4 years, if we happen to notice, we’ll see that all those little things that made life just a little bit easier for us, that were part of government, have been stripped out to justify even more tax breaks for those who need it least. And 4 more years of money concentration will have occurred.

For the life of me, I can’t see one positive reason to vote Republican. It’s hard enough to put that “X” next to Obama (as it takes a huge act of faith) but to enable another 4 years of Reaganomics under Romney? You must be kidding!

Maldonado has held several public offices and has gotten used to feeding at the public trough. This bum with his tax problems, changes political parties to run, remember that. No convictions, just say what you have to in ordet to get elected, thats him. Granted Capps has been in office awhile but even tho she is a Democrat I think she is sincere in her convictons. Abel needs to get off the public dole and get his lazy ass up on a tractor and do some real work for his $

But it’s the same with Capps. Why not give the Libertarian a chance?

I’m confused about just who is feeding at the trough, a 14 year career politian with tax problems??

This is such old news, I am actually tired of reading about it… Out with Capps in with Abel. They are both not my choice but I not voting incumbents. Hope and change for me!,

It occurs to me your approach and attitude toward the election is rather mindless, certainly simplistic, and makes no particular sense. You are basically stereotyping incumbents and encouraging a bigoted, thoughtless attitude toward voting.

I don’t think you are helping matters with your approach.

It doesnt even make much sense when you figure that Maldonado for practical purposes, with his many years in public office, is almost as much of an “incumbent” as Capps, and is certainly a more polarizing and controversial candidate, with a HUGE tax liability that still hangs over him that he hopes to wipe away at taxpayers expense.

Get real please,

Abel plotted and schemed with his accountants and lawyers to take “aggressive” tax positions so they could negotiate a settlement more favorable than paying the simply calculated tax. A truly American right to do even if you take a stupid position on all ready settled tax matters. Ms Capps on the other hand was oblivious to what was going on. So your choice is a schemer v a dunce. Can I get another choice? But Abel does have a nice tractor! And just to be fair Lois looks pretty good for almost 70.

“heybob…”, tell us how in the world YOU know supposedly know the intricate details of Maldonado’s accounting and tax filing procedures and strategy? Especially with Maldonado choosing to keep the details of his tax filings as private as possible.

Do you really expect us to believe you have all this inside–and “favorable”–information about Maldonado’s business and personal accounting?

Get real, please.

That’s hardly insider information, it’s just basic business tax strategy 101. Haven’t you heard those radio ads (“. . .former IRS agents . . .”)?

“An just to be fair Lois looks pretty good for almost 70.”

Not if you look at her picture in the TV ads that Abel is airing.

Sorry for using all capital letters but ……… HE IS A CROOK !!!!!!

When your opponent is this bad, even a horrible congresswoman has a shot at re-election.

rOy, you seem to enjoy insulting Lois Capps every chance you get. But your insults are NEVER backed up by any substance. You simply sound like an angry, rightwing whiner who is grasping for straws to justify your questionable political stance.

So, let me help you by asking you this SIMPLE question:

What is it SPECIFICALLY that you want Lois Capps to do that she hasn’t done or isn’t already doing?

How about stop the spending for starters, and start supporting the taxpayers instead of Wall street, special intrest groups, illegals, cut the waste and stop blindly supporting the party line

KayakNut, I wasn’t asking you, but since your replied, would you care to be SPECIFIC about what you want Lois Capps to do? As it is now, all you are doing is spouting off the same old vague and mostly-meaningless cliches.

Secondly, Capps DOES “support” the taxpayers and does not “blindly” support the party line. For instance, Capps was one of the few in congress who voted against going to war in Iraq (and the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of innocent people unnecessarily.)

I thought I just did? The fact that you think it is meaningless goes to show why California is in such bad shape. Basics of budgets spend only what you take in not on what you hope too or plan on without sound structure. Gov Brown and company seem to have the same old cliches, “Give us more money or we will cut funding too”…. this time it is schools, before it was veterans, elderly, social programs, pick any group they can pull the emotional strings on.

For your Secondly, where is your specifics on Ms. Capps support of middle class taxpayers? You claim lacks proof and remember she has been in office for 14 years.

Where were her votes prior to 9-11-01 to stop the slaughter of thousands of innocent Americans unnecessarily?, and remember specifs please.

That’s just more mindless, meaningless, self-serving drivel, KayakNut. What specifically do you want Lois Capps to do?

Or, if that stumps you, you can tell us what YOU would do if were in Congress. Again, give us specifics. Because it is too easy to whine and insult people based on your typical empty cliches. So far, other than that, you’ e got NOTHING.

Is there a law you want passed? Abolished? What in hell do you want?

Some people just can not see above the fog, and no amount of proof will help. So have a great day and hopefully a majority of the CA voters are able to see clearly and vote out those currently in office that have allowed and pushed our state faster and faster downhill.

So, what do you want Lois Capps to DO about your complaints? You can whine and moan all you want, but you offer NOTHING specific, nothing tangible, NOTHING but krap, really, (pardon the expression.)

Possibly on subsequent votes, but the only congressperson to vote against the carte Blanche given to Bush was Barbara Lee of Oakland. The only one!! That’s the vote the started it all. Don’t know where Capps was then. You tell me

Kayaknut: Don’t you wonder how Abel would have voted if he had been our congressperson when the vote for the Wall Street bailout came up? Ads for Abel always point out Ms. Capps’ vote on this, but given the dire warnings about how our entire banking system was on the verge of collapse, do you think it would have been better for America if that bailout hadn’t happened? I understand that many, like myself, are very upset at how many of the CEOs turned around and gave themselves bonuses and have generally shut the rest of us out of their ability to have access to inexpensive lending, but would it have been worth it to crash our entire capitalistic system to “spank” the bad players on Wall Street?

And how about some specifics about Lois Capps and “illegals”?

I do, but since he has not been in office for 14 years his likley votes didn’t matter only Ms Capps actual votes did. Bailouts need to be examined, All we got was “Without the bailouts it would have been worse” but why bailout the banks instead of the middle class, and at what expense?

Your correct on at least one thing…..He has been in politics since 1994, so he has been in politics for approximately 16 years. He is a cookie cutter example of political climbing. Like the theory of evolution poster of Apes, Able is on the road of corruption that has become the norm of political office. Maldonado first ran for Santa Maria City Council in 1994 at the age of 26. In 1996, at the age of 28, Councilman Maldonado successfully ran for mayor, defeating the incumbent Mayor Robert Gordon Bunch and retiree George Hobbs 40%-39%-21%, a margin of 70 votes.

In 1998, at the age of 31, Mayor Maldonado was elected to the California State Assembly with 60% of the vote in the 33rd District, representing San Luis Obispo County and western Santa Barbara County.

In 2004, Maldonado was elected to the California State Senate by a margin of 53% to 43% over his Democratic opponent, San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Peg Pinard

In March 2005, a San Luis Obispo weekly newspaper revealed that Maldonado had received $30,987 in gifts from an organization representing California’s power industry.[5] Those gifts included multiple trips to Australia, Africa and Europe.

In 2005, Maldonado declared his candidacy for the office of California State Controller after Controller Steve Westly decided to run for Governor. Maldonado was defeated in the June 6, 2006 Republican primary by Tony Strickland.[11]

Following his loss, Maldonado publicly criticized Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for not supporting his campaign more forcefully, suggesting that Schwarzenegger doesn’t care about Hispanics, when he told the Los Angeles Times that “[w]hen [Schwarzenegger] needs Latinos, Latinos are always there for him. When Latinos need him, the answer’s been no.”[12] Maldonado issued a public apology for the comment. Maldonado also maintains that he is no longer running for any further political offices.

On the November 23, 2009, episode of The Jay Leno Show, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger announced that he was nominating Maldonado as Lieutenant Governor.

On February 11, 2010, Maldonado was confirmed as Lieutenant Governor by the state senate. However, his nomination was not approved by the State Assembly. Needing 41 votes (in the 80 seat assembly) for confirmation in the lower chamber, he received 37 votes in favor, with 35 votes against.

He was sworn into office as the Lieutenant Governor on April 27, 2010.

California lieutenant gubernatorial election, 2010

He ran for the Republican nomination for the office in June and won it with 43.4% of the vote.

Maldonado was defeated on November 2, 2010 by Democratic San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom.

He is one of many cookie cutter career politicians who can’t let go of the government welfare gravy train.

learning to lie like Romney, his future looks bright.

Lois Capps has always worked to help the communities she represents. Just recently she was able to “spend government fund” for a much needed van to transport Veterans from SLO to their medical care in Los Angeles.

A few months ago, she presented “government funds” to help Morro Bay construct a connector bridge for bicycle enthusiasts along the coast.

There’s much more, those two items are the most recent.

Lois Capps is always available to any constituent. Having signed up at her web site, I receive regular updates on things that matter.

The only time I have heard from UnAbel, is when he’s soliciting funds he needs to further advance himself beyond his abilities.

Sorry I don’t got for election year smoke and mirrors, where was she the last 14 years, not just this year? In part with the Democrats drawing the boundaries she knew she was a lock for office so all she had to do was not make the party mad. A years ggod deads does not make up for 14 years of looking the other way for the middle class.

Capps has been our Congressional representative in good standing for more than a decade. Where have YOU been looking?

Lois Capps has absolutely been looking out for her constituents’ interest. She is engaged with her community, communicates often and is just about the best representative this district has ever had.

Capps is doing her job well. What more–try to give specifics here–do you want her to do?

Whining and moaning and insulting that you do so frequently may make YOU feel powerful,but it is doing NOTHING productive for our community and only makes it more difficult to create the unity that our community is in such need of.

“Good standing”? your opinion, and I think you can guess not mine. All you can say is that she is looking out for her consituents, how? Name one bill that helped the taxpaying middle class? or that didn’t help puch California faster downhill?

kayakNut, I disagree with your attitude and opinion that enacting even MORE laws will solve all our problems.

Lois Capps has been doing exactly the job that her constituents want from her. She helps people. She communicates. She spends time around her. She puts up with the anger, attacks, bigotry and chauvinism that extremists try to inflict her with. And yet she maintains her grace and composure, and goes on working for her community in ways that her opponent never has and never will. And she gets celebrated nationwide as the nicest politician in Congress. That, in my opinion, makes her a political hero.

And what have YOU done for your community lately? (whining and moaning and insulting do not count.)