The Inconvenient Country: Denise Rich Renounces Citizenship And Saves Millions In Taxes

The Rich couple is back in the news. If you recall, President Bill Clinton pardoned billionaire trader Marc Rich in one of the most unwarranted presidential acts under the pardon power — a pardon rightfully denounced as little more than a payback for a wealthy supporter by Clinton. Now, Rich’s wife, Denise, has given up her U.S. citizenship — reportedly to avoid taxes. Clinton should be doubly ashamed of his association and assistance to this couple.

Marc Rich became a fugitive in 1983 — fleeing charges of tax evasion, fraud, racketeering and illegal trading of oil with Iran. Clinton however felt that of all of the people charged in the United States, the billionaire fugitive warranted a presidential pardon in 2001.

Rich, 68, is a Grammy-nominated songwriter and socialite and divorced Marc Rich in 1996. Her application was filed under her maiden name Denise Eisenberg. Born in Massachusetts, she will now rely on her Austrian citizenship through her deceased father.

For my part, these recent denials of citizenship should focus greater attention at the ever-expanding number of “dual citizens” in the United States — a status that has never been fully debated in this country. We have never discussed whether citizens should be able to claim two or more home nations. Rich shows that such status allows for people to forum shop between nations. Obviously what was holding her to the United States was pure convenience — much like her husband who did not hesitate to flee when the laws were applied to him like an ordinary person — at least until Bill Clinton rescued him on his final day in office. That does not mean that dual citizenship is fundamentally wrong but it does suggest the need for some national discussion of the trend.

Source: MSNBC

39 thoughts on “The Inconvenient Country: Denise Rich Renounces Citizenship And Saves Millions In Taxes”

  1. Darren,
    good luck with your surgery and hurry back.
    I agree with the good riddance comments about Denise Rich. However, Swarthmore had some great links to a current presidential candidate who is doing everything in his power to avoid disclosure of his tax returns and his tax “havens”. Is Romney hiding possible illegal tax actions? Shouldn’t we require full disclosure of just how he is hiding his millions and if he has paid the proper amount of taxes?

  2. The sheer numbers of rich people who have dual U.S./Israeli citizenship ensures that the legality of same isn’t going to change anytime soon. Besides, lawyers who represent those people need their business.

  3. On an unrelated note, I will need to take a leave of absence from the forum. I’m having neurosurgery tomorrow on my arm to correct a compressed nerve that has caused me to partially lose sensation in two fingers and half my palm . I’ll be in a splint / sling for six weeks. Typing might be difficult. I’ll still read everything but response might be curtailed for a while.

  4. it is clear in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 where this issue is:

    Article 13: (2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country

    Article 15.
    (1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.
    (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality

    I would not like to see a situation where just because several individuals have cheated the system by changing their nationality we lose dual nationality. I believe the overwhelming majority of other persons do not cause any harm.

    I am a dual citizen with Ireland and the US. Ireland does not demand taxes from me unless I return there and reside. The US would demand taxes from me if I lived in Ireland (for two years I believe but does credit foreign tax) U.S. law also can be very arrogant with regard to dual citizens. If I used my Irish Passport to enter or leave the US the gov’t can in theory revoke my citizenship. If I am elected to an political position such as a County Councilman there I will lose US citizenship.

  5. I loathed Bill Clinton’s faux Republican agenda. However, he gained my sympathy during that ridiculous attempt to impeach him, so much so that I bought his autobiography. I read it about a quarter of the way through up to the point he began praising the Tyson and Walton families. At that point I remembered why I disliked him and stopped reading.

    As for dual citizenship I am against it for adults because it is almost always used for some dodge or another.

  6. Marc Rich’s eleventh hour pardon by Bill Clinton was arranged by Eric Holder, deputy Attorney General, and Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Marc Rich’s attorney.

  7. The super rich really don’t see themselves aligned with a particular country. The entire world is theirs to do with as they see fit. They pay functionaries to find the best ways to avoid taxes. Nationalism is used as a divide and conquer (the world). While most of us are satisfied with one home, they have to have several. Since they can afford staff to keep them up and ready for them at a moments notice, It’s better than staying at high end hotels. Citizenship in a particular country is a matter of convenience for whatever that citizenship will provide them. Marc Rich was able to buy a President of the USA perhaps because he didn’t like the travel restriction or maybe just because he could.

  8. If the U.S. took my tax dollars and say, provided health care with it, instead of using the majority of it to build bombs etc. and project force across the World, I might work up some outrage when people used whatever measures to avoid paying taxes. As it stands… meh.

  9. There are a lot of people in influential positions inour government with dual citizenship with Israel.

  10. As a US citizen, especially men, you DO have obligations to our common welfare. I my case, I was subject to giving my LIFE, not just money. I think that is a bit more important than money.

    I think that dual citizenship should be eliminated, especially for office holders. That USED to be the case, until the courts ruled otherwise. Our Constitution prohibits that by implication for the office of President. It should also apply to ALL Americans.

  11. And so too, Eduardo Saverin who renounced his American citizenship and fled to Singapore just before Facebook went public in order to avoid paying taxes on all those millions — (Billions?).

  12. The only way renouncing U.S. citizenship saves money in taxes is if the person wasn’t actually living or working in the U.S., but was being taxed as if they did, because the U.S. is the only country to assert that someone who does not live or work in the U.S. still owes income taxes to it. It’s an unjust law, and it’s unfortunate that some people have resorted to abandoning U.S. citizenship to get around it, but the proper remedy is to change tax law to be in accordance with every other nation on Earth: only those who live or work in the U.S. owe income taxes to the U.S.

  13. Hey its not the first Billionaire to do that…Google up the Dart Family…..Yes, the same family that makes the drinking cups…..One is in England and the other two are on Islands in the Carribean…..

    As far political paybacks…..Scooter comes to mind….. Ford pardonded Nixon before he was indicted or even impeached…..Marc…..come on….flavor of the day….

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