Democrat Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar found herself at the center of controversy once again, this time not for anti-American or anti-Semitic comments, but because of a formal finding by state authorities that she committed campaign finance violations as well as lingering questions about her marital and tax filing status.
Though Omar’s office has agreed to reimburse the misspent campaign funds, it continues to skirt around the allegations of fraudulent joint tax filings, but that controversy is definitely worthy of further scrutiny and will most likely not go away any time soon.
New allegations arise
Minneapolis CBS affiliate WCCO reported that Omar was found to have committed several campaign finance law violations following a lengthy investigation by the Minnesota Campaign Finance Board.
In the big scheme of things, the campaign finance violations were relatively minor, and Omar has agreed to pay a $500 fine and repay nearly $3,500 in campaign funds.
However, the investigation into her campaign finance violations uncovered a completely separate and potentially criminal violation of federal tax regulations, namely, that Omar filed joint tax returns with a man to whom she was not married while she was actually still married to another man.
The allegation of tax fraud was summarily dismissed by Omar’s office, as a spokesman simply said in a statement, “All of Rep. Omar’s tax filings are fully compliant with all applicable tax law.”
That doesn’t appear to be the case, however, as WCCO put together a timeline of Omar’s known personal relationships during the time frame in which the questionable tax returns were filed.
Omar had two children in the 2000s with a man named Ahmed Hirsi, with whom she was not married. Omar later married another man named Ahmed Elmi in 2009, and later obtained a “faith-based” divorce — not a legal divorce — from Elmi in 2011.
In 2012, Omar got back together with Hirsi and had a third child together. In 2014 and 2015, the pair filed joint tax returns with the IRS, and in 2016, unspecified “corrections” were made to those returns.
It was not until 2017 that Omar actually obtained a legal divorce from Elmi, and in 2018, actually married Hirsi, with whom she filed joint returns three and four years prior.
The Editorial Board of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune published a scathing piece against Omar that recounted all of Omar’s controversies and missteps since being elected to Congress, especially taking issue with the alleged tax fraud.
“It’s against the law in Minnesota to file jointly unless one filer is legally married to the other,” the Editorial Board noted. “Last year Omar told the Star Tribune that she had married her partner ‘in her faith,’ and had earlier divorced her first husband ‘in her faith.’ That’s fine for religious purposes. But for tax purposes, only civil marriages qualify.”
By all appearances, it looks like Omar violated both state and federal tax laws by filing a joint return with a man to whom she wasn’t married while she was still legally married to somebody else. This obviously warrants further investigation, and if Omar is found to be guilty of such a violation, she should be held accountable and removed from Congress, whether by her own party or by the voters of Minnesota.