Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker gets 2022 tax break on Texas home for primary residence


Republican Herschel Walker is getting a primary residence-only tax break this year on his home in the Dallas, Texas area, despite his race for Senate in Georgia.

Publicly available tax records reviewed by CNN’s KFile show Walker is listed for a Texas homestead tax exemption in 2022, saving the Senate candidate about $1,500 and potentially violating both tax rules of Texas and certain Georgia rules on establishing residency for the purpose of voting or running for office.

Walker signed up for vote in Atlanta, Georgiain 2021 after live in Texas for two decades and rarely vote. In Texas, owner’s rules let’s say that you can only benefit from the exemption for your “principal residence”.

Walker took advantage of the tax relief in 2021 and 2022 for his Texas home even after he launched a bid for the Georgia Senate, an official with the Tarrant County Tax Assessor’s Office told CNN’s KFile. The Walker campaign did not respond to repeated requests for comment from CNN. Walker is set to face Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in a runoff in December after no candidate received more than 50% of the vote in November’s midterm elections.

The politicians in the old days in Texas have landed in hot water for taking the exemption the wrong way, including the government at the time. Rick Perry, and have generally agreed to pay back taxes.

Questions have swirled around Walker’s residence since he actively began exploring the possibility of a Georgia Senate last year, and Democrats and Republicans even hit Walker on the matter.

Stand for election and vote in Georgia, 15 ruleswhich do not all have to be fulfilled, are considered for the establishment of residence, which includes where the resident benefits from his property tax exemption and where he intends to live permanently. The American Constitution only requires a potential senator must be a resident of his state when elected.

Anthony Michael Kreis, a law professor at Georgia State University, said Georgia state law on establishing residency to be able to run for office is flexible and that ultimately the biggest Walker’s problem could be political.

“At the end of the day, it’s more of a political issue than a legal one in all likelihood, … where Walker can be described as a baggage handler. It calls into question whether Walker’s change of residence was done in good faith,” Kreis said.

He noted that in 2008, Jim Powell, a Democratic candidate for a local Civil Service Commission seat, was first disqualified from standing for election by Karen Handel, a Republican who served as Georgia’s secretary of state, for benefit from a property tax exemption outside his neighborhood.

But in the end, the Supreme Court of Georgia decided that the candidate could stay on the ballotsaying 7 of 15 rules showed he had ties to the district.

“The state Supreme Court said a property exemption alone was not conclusive evidence that could disqualify a candidate,” Kreis told CNN, but said Walker, unlike Powell, n had no long voting history and had only recently returned to Georgia.

11Alive News, a local Georgia station, first reported that Walker took the homestead exemption on his home in Texas in 2020.

Walker, despite having now voted twice in Georgia and running for the state Senate, maintained the exemption, according to public records. The Texas county tax office where Walker maintains his home upheld the exemption.

Homeowners in many states can claim a tax exemption by declaring their home to be their principal residence and the exemption lowers their tax bill by removing some of the paper value of their home. Under Texas law, if an owner moved of the state, the resident can still qualify for the exemption only if they do not establish their “primary residence” elsewhere and plan to return to Texas within two years.

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