As Democrat Rep. Annie Kuster (NH-02) clams up about why she failed to pay her property taxes over several years, the ensuing scandal continues to unravel around her. In today’s installment, the Concord Monitor’s Felice Belman chastises herself and her newspaper’s whole staff “for not doing such a basic records check before the November election.” Belman writes:
Indeed, this is the type of story that makes me want to go home and go back to sleep – but not precisely for the reason our critic suggests. Yes, we got beaten by WMUR, and that’s never good. But shame on us – and WMUR and the rest of the state press corps – for not doing such a basic records check before the November election. Heck, while we’re at it, shame on former congressman Charlie Bass and the Republican Party for not unearthing such baffling poor judgment on Kuster’s part before the election.
The Monitor’s incuriousness regarding Kuster’s tax dodge is only surprising if you have never read the paper before. The Concord Monitor was a fairly obvious water-carrier for Kuster during her two Congressional campaigns. For example, after NH Journal unveiled a video during the 2012 General Election of Kuster assaulting a tracker and absconding with his video camera, a Monitor reporter called me with questions about how we obtained the video and seemed utterly disinterested in Kuster’s abhorrent, possibly criminal, behavior.
Still, it’s refreshing to see Felice Belman (who, I confess, has treated me decently in our rare interactions) admit her paper’s failings publicly and apologize to its readers.
In other Kuster Tax Scandal news, former-State Senator Gary Lambert, a Republican eyeing a Kuster challenge in two years, is calling on the Congresswoman to release her tax returns “to shed light on the unanswered questions surrounding her history of delinquent taxes.”
“Congresswoman Kuster must be upfront and honest with her constituents and offer a personal and detailed explanation about why she repeatedly missed tax payments despite a reported net worth of almost $2 million,” Lambert said in a press release. “She must also release her state and federal tax returns for the years that she failed to meet her tax obligations in order to prove to the Second District that she has nothing to hide.”