A powerful anti-Obamacare tweet hit Twitter Friday morning, made by the founder of the Drudge Report, Matt Drudge. He exclaimed in caps, "Just paid the Obamacare penalty for not 'getting covered'... I 'M CALLING IT A LIBERTY TAX!"
Some believe Drudge's "Liberty Tax" tweet has the kind of resonance that may quickly rise as an anti-Obamcare rallying call for liberty minded voters. Certainly, it would play very well on a protest poster and as a pealing mantra of protestors. Perhaps that's why the Twitter ink had hardly dried on the tweet when liberal critics raced, stumbling over themselves in print, to shoot it down. Follow the timeline to observe how quickly liberals fired up their keyboards.
Drudge's tweet hit Twitter at 11:09 a.m.. Only minutes had passed before White House spokesman Jesse Lee tweeted at 11:31 a.m., "Flat lie, no fee for previous year. Scary how much influence he once had. RT @DRUDGE: Just paid Obamacare penalty for not 'getting covered."
Lee was wrong. Drudge also posted ,"WAIVER! White House just tweeted how us self-employed don't have to pay 2014 1st Quarter Tax Estimates by April 15!" That post exposed how little Jesse Lee, a White House spokesman knew, in the tweet at 11:31 a.m claiming Matt had told a "flat out lie." Obviously, she isn't really in the White House loop. Will an apology to Matt appear soon?
A brief but particularly scathing opinion was published by Washington Post's self acclaimed liberal, Greg Sargent." In it's entirety Sargent wrote at 2.04 p.m., "Matt Drudge proudly tells the world he paid the penalty for not having health coverage, which he has termed the 'liberty tax.' Which is odd, because no one has to pay the penalty until they file their 2014 tax returns in April 2015. But maybe that copy of 'FurboTax' he bought on Ebay wasn’t actually legit."
By 2:04 p.m., Dylan Scott had already (probably) called Drudge a liar with his article, "Matt Drudge is (probably) lying about paying a huge Obamacare 'Liberty Tax'"
"Matt Drudge has about 316 days until he can pay his Obamacare 'Liberty Tax,'" at 2.52 p.m claimed Arit John, whose past articles over on the Wire show him to be a strong Obamacare supporter and a stronger critic of Republicans. John generally posits his articles around Republicans he feels either mislead or misrepresent. In the case of Drudge ringing out that he he had paid his "Liberty Tax," for Obamacare, John stayed true to form. "The problem is that he's either misleading his followers or himself. No wonder everyone is confused," observed John.
Jeffry Young, from over on the Huffington Post asked at 4:43 p.m., "What's up with Matt Drudge's weird tweet about Obamacare?" Although his article was intended to mock, Young did, however acknowledge, that it was possible that as a small business Drudge was making quarterly tax payments and had, according to IRS tax provisions, estimated monies owed to the government for the first quarter of the year.
"Matt Drudge is a lying liar," hit the web at 5:30 pm over on The Daily Banter. Obviously, this author felt no reason to hold back.
Drudge quickly explained quarterly payments were precisely what he meant, first tweeting, "Obama team players trying to convince themselves NO Obamacare taxes due this year. Adjust your doses, face reality. http://1.usa.gov/1cVFOnO"
The link Drudge provided follows to a list of all of the Obamacare taxes levied either directly or ultimately costing taxpayers. Drudge followed up with "Dazed team Obama media reporters think Opt-Out tax 'year away'? Not for small businesses that file Qtr estimates. We're there NOW, baby."
It's a fair assumption that Matt Drudge is considered a high-income taxpayer. Even a small percentage of his income could amount to a pile of money although Drudge called the tax penalty for not buying into Obamacare "Monopoly money." Drudge probably files as self-employed. He may keep a monthly business escrow account from which he pays his estimated business taxes each quarter.
According to a Breitbart article, Drudge is merely following sound tax advice:
As a self-employed individual, generally you are required to file an annual return and pay estimated tax quarterly,” the IRS website reads.So, when they file and pay those 2014 first quarter taxes, such individuals have to pay the Obamacare Individual Mandate tax if they opted to not have health insurance—like Drudge just did.Additionally, the IRS form (1040-ES) for estimating quarterly taxes specifically recommends adding the mandate penalty to line 12 for "other taxes" -- to pay before the first quarterly deadline of April 15.
Bottom line: Drudge may be wisely inclined to make certain his IRS filings are pristine, even if it means overestimation. In his opinion, the price may be cheap, a well spent "Liberty tax." After all, Drudge almost dares the IRS to take a look at him. In that vein he tweeted, "Note how none of the year ender 'lists' rank IRS scandal as a top story. Reporters and editors are scared shitless."
As for the last tweet and the last laugh, those may belong to Drudge as well. Over on the Drudge Report, the banner headline now shouts that Matt Drudge doesn't just aggregate news, he is the news. In caps, the Drudge Report banner reads: "OBAMACARE TAX COLLECTION BEGINS; WHITE HOUSE SLAMS DRUDGE 'LIE'"