Is John McCaingaming the system?
Sen. John McCain has long said he is in robust health and is strong enough to hike the Grand Canyon, but he also is receiving what his staff Monday termed a “disability pension” from the Navy.
When McCain released his tax return for 2007 on Friday, he separately disclosed that he received a pension of $58,358 that was not listed as income on his return.
On Monday, McCain’s staff identified the retirement benefit as a “disability pension” and said that McCain “was retired as disabled because of his limited body movements due to injuries as a POW.”
Certain types of military and veterans pensions are either partially or completely tax-exempt, depending on the seriousness of the disability. In McCain’s case, the exemption is 100%.
100% disabled? Here’s the relevant section of theCode of Federal Regulations, does McCain meet this standard?
TITLE 38–PENSIONS, BONUSES, AND VETERANS’ RELIEF
CHAPTER I–DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS
PART 4_SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES–Table of Contents
Subpart A_General Policy in Rating
Sec. 4.15 Total disability ratings.
Total disability will be considered to exist when there is present any
impairment of mind or body which is sufficient to render it impossible
for the average person to follow a substantially gainful occupation;
Provided, That permanent total disability shall be taken to exist when
the impairment is reasonably certain to continue throughout the life of
the disabled person. The following will be considered to be permanent
total disability: the permanent loss of the use of both hands, or of
both feet, or of one hand and one foot, or of the sight of both eyes, or
becoming permanently helpless or permanently bedridden.