Boy, when Mitt Romney decides to shoot himself in the foot, he goes straight for the machine gun. The uproar surrounding his tax returns has completely hi-jacked his campaign, and the only messages he’s getting out lately are for damage control.
In a July 13 Huffington Post report, Mitt Romney said
“…he’ll only release to the public one more tax return – and not until his accountants complete it.”
But not even a week later it was reported that Romney has not released his full tax records from 2010:
”Romney released his 2010 tax return in January of this year, a document that first informed voters about the existence of his Swiss bank account and financial activities in Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.
But people who own foreign bank accounts are required to file a separate document with the IRS that provides additional details on such overseas bank holdings, and Romney has not released that form to the public.”
Romney’s also been resisting pressure to release additional returns declaring:
“You know, John McCain ran for president and released two years of tax returns, John Kerry ran for president… You know his wife, who has hundreds of millions of dollars, never released her tax returns. Somehow this wasn’t an issue.”
Actually, Teresa Heinz Kerry did release her tax return, as did Cindy McCain, who said at the time, she “just didn’t want the release of the tax returns to become a distraction from the big issues of the campaign.” Did you catch that Mitt, avoiding the distraction of tax returns. These ladies weren’t even the candidates and they produced their tax returns.
Then there’s Shannon O’Brien, Mitt’s opponent for Governor in 2002; according to Buzz Feed (emphasis mine):
“…during his run for Governor Romney attacked his opponent Shannon O’Brien for not releasing her husband’s tax returns.
Romney said he declined to release his tax returns on a “principled position” saying in one debate “I value my privacy.” [but]… accused O’Brien, who released her tax returns every year since 1998, of being disingenuous by releasing her but not her husband’s returns, a former lobbyist who had worked with Enron.
Romney spokesman and current top Romney aide Eric Fehnrstrom claimed O’Brien was attempting to hide possibly embarrassing finances from voters.
(File that under statements that come back to bite you in the ass.)
“Her hands aren’t clean. She can’t claim to be disclosing anything until she discloses the returns of her husband… what is she hiding?”
In other interviews, when questioned about his offshore accounts, Romney has said:
“…his offshore investments were managed by a blind trust and he had no knowledge of their whereabouts.”
“The world of finance is not as simple as some would have you believe.”
Thanks for that insight Mitt, ’cause we’re all just a bunch of dolts who keep our money under our mattresses; but luckily we can read, and that’s how we know that in 1994, you called blind trusts, “an age old ruse” and explained:
“You can always tell the blind trust what it can and cannot do, You can give a blind trust rules.”
Now, you were saying?
The Internet is buzzing with theories about why Romney won’t release his other tax returns. As Steve Benen put it:
“The issue, of course, is not whether Romney is extremely wealthy or extremely wealthy. What matters here is the Republican presidential candidate’s secrecy involving his overseas finances. We don’t even know, for example, whether he’s fully paid his tax bill.”
Romney’s got to be hiding something big; as George Will explained:
“The cost of not releasing the returns are clear. Therefore, he must have calculated that there are higher costs in releasing them.”
In truth, the taxes are now beside the point; Americans are seeing Romney for who he really is, and he’s kind of a shady, slimy guy. In a 2007 Washington Post Op-Ed, Richard Cohen wrote:
“…to watch Romney … was to see a thoroughly counterfeit man. If he were a coin, a vending machine would spit him out.”