Professional racial agitator Al Sharpton responded to Tuesday’s NY Times piece revealing that both Sharpton and his charity National Action Network was increasingly delinquent in paying taxes to NY State and vendors who performed services. According to the MSNBC host and architect of racial discord, the progressive NY Times published the story because of politically motivated hostility toward Bill de Blasio and Barack Obama:
I think it’s political, he said. A lot of people don’t like the fact that President Obama’s the president. A lot of people do not like the fact that Bill de Blasio won for mayor. And they certainly don’t like that I’m still here, and I ain’t going nowhere.
Later on he added:
Every time there’s a Sean Bell or a Ferguson or a Trayvon Martin, we go through my taxes. It’s the same agreement, y’all.
The New York Times piece reported:
Today, Mr. Sharpton still faces personal federal tax liens of more than $3 million, and state tax liens of $777,657, according to records. Raw Talent and Revals Communications owe another $717,329 on state and federal tax liens.
But according to state officials, his balance on the state liens is actually $220,000 greater now than when they were first filed during the years 2008 through 2010. A spokesman for the State Department of Taxation and Finance said state law did not allow him to provide any further details.
Sharpton claims the story is false:
In a 30-minute press conference at his Harlem office which ended with him abruptly walking out on a roomful of reporters, Sharpton said, “The National Action Network’s tax debt as of December of 2013 was a little over $400,000. …On that, they want $400,000 in penalties. The board’s position at our national convention was that why should we have to pay 100 percent if we can knock it down. But we continued to pay the monthly installment while we did.”
Asked about the combined amount in taxes that he and his organization owed—$4.5, million according to the Times— Sharpton said, “How could I owe what you originally owed in 2008. Then that would have meant we paid none of the installments and that we didn’t put up the $1 million that everybody reported.”
However, Sharpton did not give the outstanding balance personally owed by him and his for-profit companies –Raw Talent and Revals Communications. Rather, he focused his remarks on how much money his nonprofit group, the National Action Network, has paid back. He also talked about paying back his federal taxes. The Times story agrees that he has been paying down his debt to the IRS, but his state tax and the Action Network’s payroll tax debt however has been growing.
Records reviewed by The New York Times show more than $4.5 million in current state and federal tax liens against him and his for-profit businesses. And though he said in recent interviews that he was paying both down, his balance with the state, at least, has actually grown in recent years. His National Action Network appears to have been sustained for years by not paying federal payroll taxes on its employees.
Sharpton also disputed the claim in the NY Times story that he leaned on the generosity of friends and sometimes even his charity, intermingling its finances with his own to cover his daughters’ private school tuition. According to Sharpton he only borrowed money from the National Action Network against his salary to help pay off his daughter’s school.
It is difficult to evaluate whether Sharpton or the NY Times is telling the truth. Sharpton didn’t really address the newspaper’s charges — he answered different questions. And it is hard to believe that the bible of the progressive movement, the NY Times, is attacking Al Sharpton for political reasons.
If the story does turn out to be false, it would be a wonderful demonstration of karma. Despite the fact that he’s a Baptist minister, Al Sharpton regularly breaks the ninth commandment, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” He has incited riots; he has falsely accused people of crimes, made disparaging remarks about people without any justification.
Sadly Sharpton will probably miss this lesson as he has missed so many others.