Entries in Sen. Claire McCaskill (2)


Unpaid Taxes on Plane Could Be Damaging to McCaskill's Brand

Office of Sen. Claire McCaskill(ST. LOUIS) -- Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill has made fighting government waste, pork barrel spending, and corruption the focus of her entire political persona.

In Senate floor speeches she often cites her history as a Missouri state auditor, lists government accountability as one of her top issues and has led the charge to change senate rules to be more transparent.

That's why her admission that she may have improperly charged taxpayers for a flight to a political event on her private plane could be particularly troubling to her brand. McCaskill is up for reelection in 2012 and facing a likely tough campaign.

She quickly repaid about $88,000 to taxpayers for all her flights on the plane, when she was asked about them by Politico earlier this month. But the resulting review of her plane unearthed something more troubling. McCaskill admitted Monday she had failed to pay four years of taxes on the plane -- $287,000 worth.

In a conference call with reporters McCaskill said she will get rid of the plane.

She said there was never a bill for the property tax sent by the state or county because, in an oversight, she had never reported to the county that the plane was being kept in St. Louis.  The plane is owned by a Delaware corporation set up by her husband, the businessman Joe Shepard.

"I know better. As an auditor, I should have checked the documentation. I should have been asking the questions. I shouldn't have assumed that someone was doing it," McCaskill said Monday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio ´╗┐


Sen. Claire McCaskill: Spending Push 'Could Cost Me My Senate Seat'

Photo Courtesy - Office of Senator Claire McCaskill(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., is embroiled in a tough re-election fight – and she said Tuesday that her push to cap federal spending could cost her her job.

“This is a bold step,” she said on the Senate floor. “It has risks and if this bill is distorted and twisted, it could cost me my Senate seat...It's a price I’m willing to pay for my country and, more importantly, it's a price I’m willing to pay for my grandchildren.”

McCaskill has partnered with Republican Bob Corker of Tennessee in a bid to force Congress to cut spending over the next decade.

Their “Cap Act” would implement a 10-year glide path to cap all spending – both discretionary and mandatory – to a declining percentage of the country’s gross domestic product. The bill would eventually bring federal spending down from the current level of 24 percent of GDP to the historical level of 20 percent of GDP.

“This bill is all about causing waves. It’s all about helping Congress get the backbone to say no,” McCaskill said at a press conference on the proposal.

“It feels a little lonely right now,” she acknowledged, “but I’m convinced that there’s merit in this proposal that’s reasonable.”

Republicans have targeted McCaskill’s Missouri seat as a key one to win if the GOP is to regain control of the Senate come 2012.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio´╗┐

ABC News Radio