Did Hilary Clinton Actually Take a Tax Writeoff (for their old underwear and shower c

I read in a recent book about the Clintons, that while Bill was Arkansas governor, Hillary did their income tax returns. The author claimed that Hillary would donate their old clothes (underwear, etc.0 to the Goodwill Industries, and take a tax deduction against income. Supposedly, she assessed Bill’s old underwear at $3.00 each! I know the right wing has always loather the Clintons…but could this be true? If so, are the income tax records of political candidates opent to the public? I’d really like to delve into the charitable donations of some of my local politicians…does the FREEDOM OF INFORMATION act apply to these records? How would I go about obtaining the tax records of some politicians.
Finally, if the story anout the Clintons is true, why would they be so goddamn cheap? It’s not like a lot of money was involved…but, who knows!:confused:

AFIAK, it isn’t up to the individual filing to “assess” anything when it comes to deductible charitable donations; any eligible organization accepting your donation will provide you with a Form 1099 stating the value of your tax-deductible gift. So, on that basis, it sounds like baloney, but I’m sure there are people more knowledgeable about the topic than I am.

I don’t know how the rules work now, but back in the '80s the company I worked for donated a lot of stuff, primarily to universities. We would give them a detailed description of what we were giving them and they’d write us a letter back that thanked us for the donation and included the detailed description, but never placed a value on it. We did that ourselves.

Perhaps it’s different now, but it was in the '80s when Clinton was Governor. It seems to me that having the recipient place a value on a donation is not much of a check as institutions that rely on donations know that their contributors want a high value and are likely to accomodate them to keep the goodies coming.

And I suppose it’s possible the company I worked for wasn’t doing it quite right - but I handled several of these and the universities never once asked whether they should provide a valuation; they just didn’t as a matter of course.

I do remember this story circulating years ago, probably during one of Clinton’s presidential campaigns. Mine are ~$3 new.

It is still the normal practice for taxpayers to assess the value of their donations. If it were the receivers’ responsibility, the form still wouldn’t be a 1099 – those are used to report the taxpayer’s income.

I work for a not-for-profit organization [501 © 3 under IRS regs to be precise] The acknowledgement of non-cash donations is really sticky these days.

Our financial auditor, not Arthur Andersen thankfully, told us not to even value stock donations in the thank you letter.

We require the donor or an licensed appraiser place a value on donation of goods and services.

1099s are sent to self-employed consultants. Form 8283 is sent to donors of things like cars, fine art or real estate. An licensed appraiser certifies the donation, the not-for-profit merely signs and acknowledges. I have probably signed 50 8283s- setting myself up to get into Lord knows how much trouble.

But certainly, back in the 1980s the charity generally came up with valuation.

Exactly opposite of my experience.


What book was this?

And even if it is true I hardly think it’s something to get outraged over, considering that Clinton didn’t make a hell of a lot as governor.

Ans SFW? Is this really worth getting bent out of shape about?


Yet another example of the two-facedness of the Republicans/right wing—They bleat and screech about how “Clinton won’t go away,” and then turn right around and bring him up with yet more bogus outrages that he has supposedly commited.

I wonder what would be the value of those underwear now, if it could be proven that they were Clinton’s. To a collector, not a republican.

So, he asked if is true. Presumably that information, if it exists, came from some financial disclosure required of certain political figures.

Anybody have the straight dope?

Um, how do you know that either the OP or the author of the alleged book is Republican/right wing?

Oh, yeah – you don’t. Must be that old “Anyone Who Disagrees With Anything I Like Is A Member Of THe Other Political Party” virus that’s going around. I recommend bed rest.

Here’s an interesting web page:


It says that on certain matters the Clintons didn’t take as much of a tax deduction as they could have. It says that one year they ignored the advice of tax experts and paid more more taxes than they had to. It says that if they had reduced their taxes as much as they were allowed to, it would have looked bad. They would have been accused of paying too little taxes that year.

Given this, I’m dubious about the tax deduction for underwear story. I’ve done some Googling on various terms, but I can’t find anything that gives the definitive story on the underwear deduction. Does anyone have the real story?

Here it is, from the New York Times - $2/pair, and when they were in Arkansas, not under the scrutiny that comes with being in the White House, when they may have changed their approach to their taxes as part of the price of being president and first lady: http://www.nytimes.com/1994/04/16/us/clinton-taxes-laid-bare-line-by-line.html

Yowza…a five year old thread about something of which I’d never heard, revived with a totally relevant cite.

Except for one thing: the article doesn’t say $2/pair. Rather:

To me, that indicates $2 for all of whatever underwear was given away. I have no idea what the facts are, but I’d not be surprised if the situation ended up to be akin to an “Al Gore created the Internet” exaggeration meme.

Either way, the story is kinda amusing…so thanks for posting a cite!

Used underwear? The charity shops around here won’t accept used underwear.
I forgot about this thread. A little silliness once in a while is refreshing. :cool:

A hijack, but along the same lines: a pair of Queen Elizabeth II’s underwear is going up for auction. Expected to obtain up to $9000.

Words fail me, but I remain amused.

Me too, almost :stuck_out_tongue:
I’d like to make an easy prediction;
Someone close to the Royals will aquire the precious garment.

If you keep track of all the things you can deduct it can add. A 3$ deduction for some underware may only reduce your taxws by $1 but if you have enough of these deductions maybe you get back a few hundred. I keep a note book and envlopes in my cars. At the end of the year I bring them in and all them all up and it does make a difference.
Never recieved a 1099 from any charity. I get a reciet atach it to a list of what was given and my estament of the value. If I get audited these will save me.

Isn’t there a pretty good chance that the Clintons never even touched their paperwork? Didn’t a famous hotel owner once say that only poor people do threir taxes? Oh, that was “pay” taxes, wasn’t it?

Every thrift store I’ve been in carries old bras and slips, as well as undershirts.

I guess I assumed we were talking about the underwear that goes on our nasty bits. :eek:
If I remember, I’ll stop in and see.