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Sonny Perdue used Florida swampland to skip out on $300,000 in taxes

Why would former Gov. Perdue, Trump’s pick for secretary of agriculture, buy $2 million in Florida swampland without ever having seen the land?

Because Perdue’s purchase, made just one day before a 180-day grace period expired, allowed Perdue to “skip — or at least delay for a long time — paying $300,000 in federal taxes on $2 million he had received from the sale of land owned by the Perdue family in Georgia.”

Perdue purchased the land from Stan Thomas, a wealthy Republican donor who Perdue appointed to the state Board of Economic Development “just weeks before one of Thomas’ companies, Fourth Quarter Properties, donated a whopping $250,000 to the state Republican Party.”

“I think that’s why there is some kind of quid pro quo going on here, to either repair an old harm or establish a future benefit,” said Atlee Mercer, a former Republican commissioner for Osceola County who was appointed county tax appraiser by Gov. Jeb Bush. “He paid too much money for the land.”

Worse yet, the Ga. legislature under Perdue — in the final minutes of the 2005 legislative session — passed a bill with a backdated provision that gave Perdue an additional $100,000 tax break on the deal.

As governor, Sonny Perdue used his political power to enrich himself. Just imagine what he could do with the power that comes with serving as secretary of agriculture.

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