“If you can’t get rid of the skeleton in your closet, you’d best teach it to dance.”
Presidential candidates have been releasing their tax returns for public view during the last seven or so election cycles. More and more, candidates have been going for greater disclosure. George W. Bush gave us 10 years worth of returns (though not consecutive), and the same for Bill Clinton. Obama and his wife released seven years worth of returns. In light of the fact that the incumbent has released his federal returns, it seems likely that Romney is the next in line. Right?
Not hardly. The GOP has been pressuring Mitt Romney to follow the lead of other nominees to release his federal returns, but so far, he’s been tight-lipped about it. To date, he has released only his 2010 return and a draft of his 2011 return. Now, I personally don’t feel the need to look at his tax returns…it would be fairly depressing, really. The fact remains, however, that if the Romneys have nothing to hide, it shouldn’t be such a big deal. So why haven’t they released their returns?
George Will put it into perspective: “The cost of not releasing the returns is clear. Therefore, he must have calculated that there are higher costs in releasing them.”
Swiss bank accounts, offshore tax accounts, an IRA that holds over $101 billion, despite having an annual contribution cap of $6000…these are things that may harm rather than help Mitt during this election cycle. (The campaign claims that Ann’s Swiss account was closed in 2010) Romney’s 2010 return did not include a Report on Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts form, which would show detail of his offshore investments.
When the Swiss government starting turning over tax evaders to the U.S. Government in 2009, amnesty was declared for those who were willing to pay back their taxes without penalty. Did the Romneys take advantage of this amnesty? Does it look good for a Republican, who is supposed to be fiscally responsible, to have accounts in other countries in order to avoid paying U. S. taxes? My guess is, probably not.
What if there is a more nefarious reason? Romney has certainly profited by manipulating the tax code for his personal profit. There is speculation that the Romneys may have made a large amount of money from the housing bust and the millions of Americans who were out of a job…taking advantage of foreclosures or well-timed investments during the bank bailouts.
Perhaps they paid little to no taxes at some point, something which the campaign has addressed. Romney’s campaign spokesperson, Andrea Saul, said that there has been no year in which the Romneys paid zero taxes.
Daniel Shaviro, a tax professor at New York University, isn’t buying it. “I think there’s an excellent chance that [Romney] didn’t pay any taxes in 2008 or 2009,” he says.
Apparently, tax returns aren’t the only issue that the Romneys continue to avoid. According to an article published on CNNMoney, Romney may have some serious explaining to do to the American people. This time, however, it’s a policy issue related to taxation that may impact thousands of Americans.
Romney has proposed a 20% cut across the board in the Federal Income Tax, as well as a reduction in corporation taxes, from 35% to 25%, respectively. He claims that he will get rid of the Alternative Minimum Tax as well as the estate tax. Sounds good on paper, especially to a Liberty minded person such as myself. So, we get rid of those things…and then where does the money come from? I feel my right-wing kicking in, folks.
Romney can’t seem to come up with a good answer for anyone as to how he would “cut deductions, exemptions, and credits” for top-level income earners to allow the government to make up the revenue lost from his proposed tax cuts. When asked which of those deductions he would cut, he evades the question.
Given that the Romneys are part of the “top-level” income earners and have taken advantage of millions of dollars worth of tax breaks for themselves, it would prove politically expedient to answer. I guess no one ever accused Mittens of being astute…
Will those illusive tax returns surface before the Republican National Convention? Mitt continues to teach his skeletons to dance, rather than allowing them out in the open for the public to see. August may well prove to Romney that Liberty-minded Republicans are no longer willing to accept such fiscal subterfuge. Convention upset, anyone?
(My son Freddie…even kids know that freedom is popular)
“If you want to limit the things government can do, you must take political action – because failing to make your own political decisions means that you are allowing somebody else to make those choices for you.”