Ed Schultz: Employee-stiffing, tax-dodging man of the people
MSNBC host Ed Schultz didn’t pay for his workers’ health insurance despite advocating for single-payer health care.
Schultz also supports higher taxes on the rich but structures his companies to avoid them and got in trouble over delinquent taxes for one of his companies.
And while the populist pundit opposes government bailouts for corporations, he supports them for the unions that give him money.
Schultz tacitly admitted that he doesn’t pay his workers health insurance by using a third-person construction to describe their situation, even though he regularly attacks companies that don’t offer their workers health insurance.
“I have a North Dakota corporation that’s based in Fargo. It’s called Ed Schultz Broadcasting,” Schultz told his audience during the Ed Show on May 19, 2013. “It’s been in business since 2004 when I started my national radio show. And I have employees who have insurance. I have some that don’t.”
In fact, Schultz owns two North Dakota companies — Ed Schultz Broadcasting, LLC and E.A. Schultz Construction, LLC.
Schultz has also repeatedly called for higher taxes on the rich. On Oct. 12, 2011, Schulz advised the Democratic Party to embrace the tax-and-spend liberal attack.
“You’re damn right I’m a tax-and-spend liberal. It’s time to tax the top one percent and spend it on the working folk of America who need a job, who need a school, who need some health care — all of this,” Schultz announced. “I’m a tax-and-spend liberal. I want to tax those who have had all the breaks over the past 30 years, and I want to make sure the working folk of America have a shot.”
But while Schultz was calling for higher taxes on the rich, he wasn’t paying them himself. In June 2011 Schultz’s company E.A. Schultz Construction was hit with a tax lien for $5,100 from the State of South Dakota.
By headquartering the company in North Dakota, Schultz avoided the high corporate taxes he would have had to pay in his home state of Minnesota.
Schultz also uses his private planes to fly to New York (7.1 percent corporate income tax) during the week and to Minnesota (9.8 percent flat corporate income tax) where he lives on the weekends. (Related: Populist blowhard Ed Schultz secretly flies on his own fleet of private jets)
Schultz has also made a big deal out of government bailouts of corporations but not of bailouts that help unions, perhaps because he’s a recipient of cash from those very unions. (Related: Labor Dept. documents: MSNBC’s Ed Schultz on labor union payrolls since 2005)
Schultz’s broadcasting company received $72,000 in member dues from the United Auto Workers union. The United Auto Workers gave Schultz the most money out of a list of unions provided recently by the conservative website Truth Revolt.
General Motors, which employs 74,000 of the UAW’s 382,500 members, was bailed out in 2008 and 2009, at a total loss to the taxpayers of more than $10 billion. UAW members got considerably better treatment in the bailout than creditors or members of other unions.
Nevertheless, UAW is considering hiking membership dues by 25 percent, the first such hike since 1967, according to Reuters.
Union membership is declining at the same time dues are going up, from 1.5 million members in 1979 to 382,500 members in 2005. The union controls $1 billion in assets, much of that money from taxpayers, thanks to the preferred bankruptcy treatment the Obama administration gave to the UAW.
In typical bankruptcy proceedings, wages are brought down to more competitive levels, but in the taxpayer bailout UAW members were subsidized to the tune of $26.6 billion.
“The cost of subsidizing UAW pay and benefits accounts for the entire net taxpayer losses—$23 billion—in the bailout,” wrote economists James Sherk and Todd Zywicki in 2012. “The entire loss to taxpayers from the auto bailout comes from the funds diverted to the UAW.”
Despite this bailout, the UAW is contemplating increasing union dues. “UAW leaders are considering increasing dues to the equivalent of 2.5 hours per month, up from two hours per month for hourly workers in the automotive industry as well as governmental, nursing, academic and other fields represented by the union,” reported Reuters earlier this month.
Reuters continued. “A veteran UAW-represented worker at either General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co., or Fiat’s U.S. unit Chrysler making $28.125 per hour pays union dues of $56.25 per month. That would rise to $70.32 per month. A recently hired worker making $15.78 per hour could see a rise to $39.45 per month from the current $31.56.”
The Daily Caller contacted the UAW to find out why the union is spending member dues on politics and TV advertisements with Ed Schultz while considering hiking dues. A woman by the name of Sandra answered the phone and said she would call back. She didn’t.