May 1, 2009
Congressional Staffers Testifying as to Legislative Intent
The taxprof blawg reports all this, but I'm summarizing: There's some dispute over a tax statute in a bankruptcy proceeding. One party in its 100+ page brief submits affidavits of Congressional staffers as to what the law means: the good stuff starts around page 52. Another brief is here.
The government's opposition is here. It includes (around page 25) a letter from Senate Legal Counsel objecting to the affidavits.
Folks, imho this is interesting, but insane. An affidavit from a staffer, 10 years after the bill was enacted as probative of meaning?? Don't get me wrong, if this were a private contract, and you had ambiguity, I could see getting it in through the parole evidence rule, but.... I don't think that's what this is. Apparently, though, there's a lot of money at stake, and so why not try.
May 1, 2009 | Permalink
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Even worse, the supposed Senate Finance Committee staff affidavits are unsigned (!) and unauthorized by the Senate.
Posted by: Anonymous | May 1, 2009 5:16:21 PM