In case you're not an elite member of the American Mustache Institute, we'll first explain what it is -- the AMI is an organization committed to fostering the growth, care and culture of mustaches and preventing mustache discrimination. A noble cause, if you ask us.
Recently, though, mustacheod Maryland Rep. Roscoe Bartlett found himself splitting hairs with the AMI over a proposed tax break. The AMI turned to Bartlett for his help in getting its 'Stache Act passed. It would qualify facial haired fellas for a $250 tax deduction per year for grooming purposes.
Here's where things get hairy -- the AMI claims Bartlett, being a man of the 'stache himself, initially pledged his support for the 'Stache Act, but later backed down. Bartlett's office said it got a media inquiry about the proposal so it forwarded it to the House Ways & Means Committee. The AMI took that as a show of support. However, Bartlett's staffers claim the Congressman never knew about the proposal or committed to supporting it.
"For the record: Roscoe is pro-stache, but he does not believe Americans should pay for people's personal grooming decisions," said Bartlett's chief of staff, Deborah Burrell.
The AMI expressed its disappointment at Bartlett's "shameful reversal" but indicated some understanding in the difficult life a mustacheod man must sometimes live.
"We are highly disappointed by their reversal based on the fact that the congressman's opponents in the race are jumping on the bandwagon to criticize him," said chairman Aaron Perlut. "They obviously don't understand what it is to be a mustached American."
To help ease the prickly situation, the AMI sent Bartlett an autographed photo of mustache king Burt Reynolds. Do you think that's enough to smooth the hairs?