Huckleberries Online

Judge: Hart Case 'Truly Remarkable'

In his quixotic battle to not pay state and federal income taxes, a North Idaho state legislator was clobbered by a windmill Wednesday. Rep. Phil Hart (R-Athol) lost his bid to forestall the Idaho Tax Commission from coming after $53,523 in state income tax he owes. One day after hearing arguments, 1st District Court Judge John Mitchell tossed Hart's case out on its ear. "Hart's [motion] lacks any cogent legal argument as to why this Court has jurisdiction,"  Mitchell writes in a tart, 13-page ruling. (pdf) Indeed, Mitchell goes on to say, "Instead of providing legal argument, Hart makes the following circular, wholly unsupported claim that this Court simply assume it has jurisdiction ... (emphasis Mitchell's)" The judge was not amused, and called Hart's claims "truly remarkable." But he didn't mean it in a good way/Kevin Taylor, Inlander. More here.

Question: As the Riddler in the Batman movie would say, "Riddle me this ..." How can Phil Hart be a member of the House Judiciary Committee and fail to file a tax appeal in a timely manner?

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D.F. Oliveria
Dave Oliveria writes the Huckleberries Online Blog for North Idaho readers and the Huckleberries print column.

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