Ken Ulman: Scofflaw

Howard County Excutive Ken Ulman has employed an illegal immigrant as his house keeper for the past year and a half.

Howard County Executive Ken Ulman said he dismissed a 62-year-old woman who cleaned his house for the past year and a half after questions were raised about her citizenship, and she admitted that she was in the country illegally.

Ulman said he and his wife, Jaki, unwittingly used the woman’s services.

Ulman claims to have not known about her status until a reporter inquired but his actions belie that statement. He did not report her income until this discovery was made.

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The Ulmans paid the woman $4,600 in 2006, Ulman said. He said he filed a Form 1099 reporting the income with the Internal Revenue Service this month, before firing her. He said he expects to pay a small fine for not reporting her income earlier.

According to IRS regulations, the maximum penalty for failure to file an income information return for the previous year by Aug. 1 is $50.

“I am upset with myself,” Ulman said. “I am an elected official. … I think about these things. I try to do things the way they are supposed to be done.”

Here you will note that Ulman, even now, is skirting the law by reporting the income of his fired illegal immigrant housekeeper on a 1099, treating her as an independent contractor and making her liable for 100% of her FICA tax. Generally, the IRS requires you to treat a housekeeper as an employee and pay half the FICA tax.

Thus a compassionate and enlightened Democrat treats the underpriveleged. The People Against the Powerful, indeed.

David Keelan at Howard County Maryland Blog has some personal involvement in this story and questions Ulman’s veracity.

David’s dilemma is one that faces political operatives frequently and underscores the importance of a political truism, Finley Peter Dunne’s “politics ain’t beanbag” and a political anecdote, probably apocryphal but instructive nevertheless:

According to legend, in an early race in Texas, Johnson told a staffer to
put out a story that his opponent liked to have sex with pigs. When the staff
member questioned the truth, LBJ’s great line was

“Of course it’s not true — but lets make the [S.O.B.] deny it.”

At the very least, Ulman should have been given the opportunity to deny the story.

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