Former Congressman Walt Minnick said Wednesday it now appears likely he will lose his appeal in U.S. Tax Court and blames one of Idaho’s most storied law firms for his predicament. Last week, Minnick and his wife, A.K., filed a lawsuit alleging negligence and professional malpractice by Hawley Troxell, a firm that has handled business and personal matters for Minnick for 25 years or more. Minnick says real estate lawyer Geoffrey Wardle failed to comply with IRS regulations in handling a 2006 conservation easement granted to the Land Trust of Treasure Valley for the Minnicks’ seven-lot, 74-acre development near Hidden Springs, Showy Phlox Estates. The IRS denied Minnick’s claim of a deduction of about $1 million, disallowing $305,629 in tax savings in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Minnick is suing the IRS in U.S. Tax Court, but said an April ruling in a Colorado case makes Wardle’s mistake potentially fatal to his case/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.