by Sven Magnussen
The IRS Code, C.F.R., Title 26, Subtitle A, Chapter 1, Subchapter B, Part V, § 152 defines a dependent as a qualifying child or qualifying relative with exceptions. Dependents ineligible for the tax exemption are citizens or nationals of other countries unless such individual is a resident of the United States or a country contiguous to the United States. Indonesia is not a contiguous country to the United States.
1973 student photo of EWC Alumni Ann Dunham Soetoro, mother of Barack Obama.
Ann Dunham Soetoro was an East-West Center grantee from 1973-78 for Master’s and Ph.D. studies in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Hawai‘i. In 1973, Lolo and S. Ann Soetoro filed a U.S. Federal Income Tax return as married, filing jointly, with one exemption. Although the return is prepared by a tax professional, the exemption is not named. The tax table [pdf] for determining tax owed for Married Filing Joint, 3 exemptions, 1973 Form 1040 for an adjusted gross income of $4,250 - $4,300, indicates the tax is $102.
The Soetoro tax return filed in Hawai‘i for 1973 indicates one dependent named Maya. Maya was the daughter of Lolo and Stanley Ann Soetoro.
Obama was ineligible to be named as a dependent on the Soetoro tax returns because he was not a U.S. Citizen in 1973 and he was in the legal custody of Office of Refugee Resettlement contractor Catholic Social Services of Connecticut in 1973. The Soetoro's were stripped of their parental rights in a 1971 custody hearing in Hawai'i after Obama was abandoned at a port of entry in the United States. Ten year olds with foreign nationality are not whisked through customs at a U.S. port of entry. Abandoned children at U.S. ports of entry are taken into protective custody by INS. After a hearing to determine custody in Hawai'i Family Court, the Court ordered the Soetoro adoption annulled, a COLB to be filed with the Hawai'i Department of Health with Barack Hussein Obama Sr. as the father and Barack Hussein Obama II as the name of the child. The Court did not rule on the nationality of the child. Consequently, Obama remained a citizen of Indonesia remanded to the custody of Catholic Social Services of Connecticut with his grandmother, Madelyn Payne, appointed as his guardian.
UPDATE 001: "Fred Nerks" of Freerepublic.com posts a link to a Honolulu Advertiser newspaper article which states Obama was living with his mother in Hawai'i in 1973.
Maya and her mother returned to Honolulu in 1973 and, for three years, lived with Barack on Poki Street, just 'ewa of Punahou School. "My father did not live with us at that time," Maya said. "They lived apart. They were still together and still wanted to make a go of the marriage." Dunham took young Maya back to Indonesia in 1976 to live with Soetoro's mother, while Barack moved into his grandparents' apartment on Beretania Street while he finished his high school years at Punahou.
If Obama was a U.S. citizen, he would have been eligible to be claimed as a dependent on the Soetoro 1973 U.S. Federal tax return.
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