September 10, 2005
The cost of crossing Rove
Just in case there is anyone who still believes that Karl Rove will ever be held accountable for anything:
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A lawyer with the Texas secretary of state was fired after she spoke to a reporter about presidential adviser Karl Rove’s eligibility to vote in the state.
Elizabeth Reyes, 30, said she was dismissed last week for violating the agency’s media policy after she was quoted in a Sept. 3 story by The Washington Post about tax deductions on Rove’s homes in Washington and Texas.
… The Post earlier reported that Rove inadvertently received a homestead tax deduction on his home in Washington, even though he had not been eligible for the benefit for more than three years. Rove was eligible for the deduction when he bought the home in 2001, but a change in the tax law in 2002 made the deduction available only to property owners who do not vote elsewhere. Rove is registered to vote in Texas.
The tax office admitted the mistake, saying it failed to rescind the deduction, and Rove agreed to reimburse the city an estimated $3,400 in back taxes, the Post reported.
Rove is registered to vote in Kerr County, Texas, where he and his wife own two rental homes that he claims as his residence. But two local residents told the Post they had never seen Rove there.
The Post reported Saturday that when its reporter called the Texas secretary of state’s office for her story, she was told the press officer was on vacation and she was transferred to Reyes.
The attorney told the reporter that it was potential vote fraud in Texas to register in a place where you don’t actually live, and she was quoted as saying Rove’s cottages don’t “sound like a residence to me, because it’s not a fixed place of habitation.”
CREW agrees, even if the Post has now bought the line (detailed in a subsequent “correction”) that Rove is somehow off the hook because “an individual’s intent to return to a home owned in Texas is a primary factor in qualifying for residency.”
Well of course Rove intends to return to live in one of his two Texas vacation cottages—the largest of which is 814 square feet and worth $25,000—rather than in his $1.1 million D.C. home.
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