Obama team hits Romney over financial disclosures
April 6th, 2012
11:37 AM ET
2 years ago

Obama team hits Romney over financial disclosures

(CNN) - President Barack Obama's campaign wasted no time Thursday jumping on a report about Mitt Romney limiting certain disclosures of his financial investments. And Mitt Romney's campaign was equally quick to fire back.

Using the president's Twitter account, as well as accounts from top campaign staff, Obama's re-election team pushed a story by the Washington Post, even starting the Twitter hashtag: #WhatsRomneyHiding.

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"So what's Romney hiding?" the president's Twitter account (@BarackObama) read Thursday night, urging followers to demand that Romney release more years of his tax returns.

Romney's team, however, blasted Obama's campaign for launching the attack.

"President Obama will do anything to try and distract Americans from his failed record of chronic unemployment, lower incomes and higher gas prices," Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said in a statement to CNN.

The Washington Post reported Thursday Romney used an "obscure exemption in federal ethics law" that allows him to avoid revealing the full extent of his holdings in financial disclosures.

According to the Post, Romney took advantage of the loophole for 48 accounts at Bain Capital, the candidate's former private equity firm. By giving narrow descriptions of his holdings, Romney is permitted from fully disclosing the company's underlying assets, the Post reported.

"Romney has made it difficult to know precisely where his money is invested, whether it is offshore or in controversial companies, or whether those holdings could affect his policies or present any conflicts of interest," the article stated.

The newspaper noted, however, that Romney is not violating any rules and that his advisers have certified his financial documents with the Office of Government Ethics.

But that didn't stop Obama's campaign from using it as another way to paint the former Massachusetts governor as an out-of-touch businessman seeking to hide his true wealth.

"Mitt Romney has put his personal financial assets in a black box and hid the key, attempting to play by a different set of rules than any candidate in recent history," Jim Messina, Obama's campaign manager, said in a statement.

The campaign has previously attacked Romney for not releasing more tax returns than the ones he released in January, which only included returns from the years 2010 and 2011.

Romney spokeswoman, Saul, said the candidate's disclosures "completely and accurately describes Governor Romney's assets as required by the law applicable to candidates for president. If (the Office of Government Ethics) had at any point considered any part of the filing insufficient, it would have made this clear."

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (359 Responses)
  1. Claudia, Phoenix, AZ

    Make no mistake about it, if President Obama ask what Romney is hiding, he already knows what Romney's hiding and doesn't want Americans to know.

    April 6, 2012 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  2. Etch-a-Sketch Mitt Is Soo Plastic he Makes Mannequins Looks Real

    Nobody knows the real Mitt....he said it himself, he is Etch-a-Sketch Mitt Romney!

    Shake and bake baby!!!

    April 6, 2012 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  3. daris

    Can we say these repugs karl rove the koch brother's are trying to be puppet master with the american people . Please wake up before they buy this election. Make romney tell us about his holding and what is he hiding. It's a different world we either keep ahead or fall back. Obama 2012

    April 6, 2012 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  4. NVa Native

    The GOPits keep trying to make the President into this mythical person who’s weak with his convictions and full of contradictions, when Obama’s proven time and again just the opposite is true. But it is Romney has proven over and over that he is the candidate that is the walking contradiction who changes his convictions when ever it suites his ambition.

    April 6, 2012 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  5. T'sah From Virginia

    It's all of those SWISS accounts he is hiding... Point Blank!!!

    April 6, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  6. bill

    uhbama is a disaster.

    April 6, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  7. Etch-a-Sketch Mitt Is Soo Plastic he Makes Mannequins Looks Real

    Romney talks about loving America so much...but his heart and his money are in Swiss Bank accounts and CAYMEN ISLAND!!!

    That pretty much sums up all you need to know about Etch-a-Sketch Mitt Romney. Enough said!!!!

    April 6, 2012 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  8. RealityBites

    Meanwhile..., out here in reality.
    The federal government racked up an almost $780 billion deficit in the first six months of the fiscal year, according to new data from the Congressional Budget Office. With the Federal debt now at $16.394 trillion. $6+ TRILLION in the last three years alone.

    April 6, 2012 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  9. 4merRepubCT

    Romney is doing all he can to present a faux I'm-just-one-of-the-guys persona. Insulting Obama's Harvard pedigree, while having two Harvard degrees himself, and plenty of advisors with ties to his alma mater. What a joke! No one is buying his "I've had it tough" story. He hasn't got a clue about middle-class troubles, and doesn't care about the poor. How can anyone think he will be able to represent the great majority of Americans?

    April 6, 2012 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  10. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Romney is doing the righ thing being in a blind trust."

    Apparently not. This man wants to become President and is parading about as big man on Wall Street (without the connections). Blind trust or not, it's incredible that Romney thinks he can continue greasing both sides of that coin and still come out "heads up". Not going to happen.

    April 6, 2012 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  11. Ferret out the BS

    How can anyone expect transparency if there is more to disclose. Yes maybe he followed the law but that does not always tell the whole story. When people don't disclose the whole truth that usually means there is something that they're hiding and for good reason; it would hurt them.

    April 6, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  12. Ilya

    Democrat politicians depend on the ignorance of their base to be elected. I see that on this blog their base is fulfilling expectations. Republicans aren't much better, but at least they try to help the country, rather than try to turn it into failing europe, i.e. greece and spain as the two most prominent examples at the moment.

    April 6, 2012 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  13. harvey 60

    Romney should be releasing his tax returns from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Utah, and California, where he owns homes. Let's see how much he paid in state income and property taxes too.

    April 6, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  14. Ilya

    120K jobs, unemployment dropped to 8.2 percent. Democrat = see economy getting better. The reality is the drop in unemployment is due to the number of people that are no longer in the job market, primarily women that have stopped looking for work. The real unemployment rate is in the neighborhood of 16%.

    April 6, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  15. Debra from Georgia

    Etch-a skecth, it is all in the Cayman Island, is it? , we do not know, WHAT IS ROMNEY HIDING, TELL THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WHAT YOU ARE HIDING. OUT OF TOUCH, ETCH-A SKETCH IDIOT

    April 6, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  16. Fair is Fair

    "It's all of those SWISS accounts he is hiding... Point Blank!!!"

    "Romney talks about loving America so much...but his heart and his money are in Swiss Bank accounts and CAYMEN ISLAND!!!"
    -------------
    Once again, his fortune is in a Blind Trust. The definition of a Blind Trust –

    "A financial arrangement in which a person, such as a high-ranking elected official, avoids possible conflict of interest by relegating his or her financial affairs to a fiduciary who has sole discretion as to their management. The person choosing the trust also gives up the right to information regarding the status of the assets"

    April 6, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  17. Ilya

    Giving credit where due, Obama is a brillian campaigner. Look at what he has done with the healthcare issue. He has created a win/win situation with his base. If it is upheld he says, "see I told you." If it is defeated he says, " if it wasn't for them you would have healthcare." Victim creation is what community organizers are great at and Obama is one of the best.

    April 6, 2012 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  18. Discernment

    QUESTION: WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE!?!?
    ANSWER: A weak mainstream media!

    Mitt Romney has been running for President since 2006. And in those 6-years, the Media can only get Mitt to make disclosure of his finances for the previous 2-years. (And that was 'NOT A FULL FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE').

    If the reverse was to occur where President Obama had not made full financial disclosure; and also not provide full disclosure of his life (e.i. – born poor, food stamp recipient, etc), then the 'Tea Party GOP Republicans' would be all over Obama and the 'LameStream Media' along with FauxNews would be repeating the GOP hypocritical cries verbatim.

    April 6, 2012 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  19. edog

    RealityBites

    Meanwhile..., out here in reality.
    The federal government racked up an almost $780 billion deficit in the first six months of the fiscal year, according to new data from the Congressional Budget Office. With the Federal debt now at $16.394 trillion. $6+ TRILLION in the last three years alone.
    -------------------------

    Exactly moron!! That means $10 trillion was racked up before Obama came into office. Bush and the GOP racked up the deficit with 2 unfunded wars and $4 trillion in tax cuts for the rich and NOW they are complaining!!!!

    April 6, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  20. Annie, Atlanta

    Romney won't disclose all of his assets, and according to an article on the Google news site (did not see which publication), has no intention of doing so. Umm. What's he hiding? And why? What international companies, with ties to what and whom, is he doing business with or invested in. Inquiring minds want to know. Being adamant not to disclose makes the mind wander – at least mine - terrorist organizations or organizations linked to terrorists, or countries linked to terrorism. The mind has no limits.

    April 6, 2012 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  21. coolbreeze

    I learned in 5th grade what millionaires and Cayman Island, Swiss Banks have all in common.

    April 6, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  22. ART

    oh boy its etch and scetch time

    April 6, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  23. MNTaxpayer

    I support President Obama, but I'm sorry to see his campaign resort to this kind of silliness. so Please, both campaigns, lets try to raise the bar a little bity and act like adults and discuss only important issues. It's so discouraging.

    April 6, 2012 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  24. Lee

    chronic unemployment, lower incomes and higher gas prices are not enough to distract me from the fact that the republicans are not capable of good leadership

    April 6, 2012 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  25. BobInIrvine

    @RealityBites: You seem to forget the intransigent RepubliCAN'Ts have handcuffed the revenue stream by protecting the historically low tax rate paid by the wealthy. Since those low tax rates don't seem to make the "job creators" actually do so, it's time to return to the progressive tax rates that we've had since 1914. (And, given we are "at war," there should be a surtax to make the war pay as we go.)

    April 6, 2012 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
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