Biden to Romney: 'Show your papers'
July 10th, 2012
12:59 PM ET
2 years ago

Biden to Romney: 'Show your papers'

(CNN) - Amplifying the Obama campaign's push for Mitt Romney to release more tax documents, Vice President Joe Biden made some of his most biting remarks yet in a speech Tuesday attacking the presumptive GOP presidential nominee on several fronts.

"He wants you to show your papers, but he won't show us his," Biden said.

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At a Las Vegas speech for the National Council of La Raza convention, a large Latino civil rights group, Biden carried the torch in the campaign's recent blitz against Romney over reports of his offshore investments.

He lobbed back at Romney the GOP candidate's charge that Obama is "out of touch."

"This is the man who says President Obama is out of touch?" Biden said. "This coming from the man who until recently had a Swiss bank account, and millions of dollars invested in the Grand Cayman Islands beyond scrutiny, and the president, Obama, is out of touch?"

Team Obama and national Democrats have seized on recent reports delving into Romney's finances, including one in the magazine "Vanity Fair," which called Romney a "remarkable financial acrobat" with accounts and investments in several places considered tax havens for Americans – Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and Switzerland.

While the campaign hasn't directly charged Romney with tax evasion, they suggest the millionaire may be hiding important details about his finances by not disclosing multiple years of returns.

Biden also quoted from a recent Washington Post report on Romney's former financial firm, Bain Capital, and the GOP contender's suggestion to a Nevada newspaper that the housing market right itself by hitting "rock bottom."

"That may be a sound business judgement if you're running Bain Capital, but it's not a sound judgement for the United States government," Biden charged.

In January, Romney released his tax returns for 2010 and an estimate for 2011. Federal campaign law does not require candidates to release tax returns, but it does require candidates to file annual financial disclosure paperwork, which Romney has done.

The re-election team often points to Romney's father, the late George Romney, who released 12 years of tax returns when he ran for president in 1968.

"He said, and I quote, 'One year could be a fluke, perhaps done for show'," Biden said, referring to George Romney's stated reason for putting out a dozen years of documents.

Biden continued: "His son has released only one year of his tax returns. Making a lie of the old adage: Like father, like son."

Romney responded Monday to the recent barrage of attacks, saying his foreign investments have been held in a blind trust and managed by a trustee. The candidate emphasized he has no knowledge of where his money is being placed.

"I don't manage them. I don't even know where they are," Romney said in an interview with Radio Iowa.

Romney further reiterated he was in no violation of tax law.

"That trustee follows all U.S. laws. All the taxes are paid, as appropriate. All of them have been reported to the government. There's nothing hidden there," the candidate said, arguing the president was trying to "divert attention" from his own record.

A surrogate for Romney, Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah, came to the candidate's defense on Tuesday, saying it was time for Democrats to let go of the issue.

"He's released everything that he's required to release including paying more than sixteen percent of his income to charitable giving," the Republican congressman said on CNN's "Starting Point." "Governor Romney's been very successful. Get over it."

– CNN's Paul Steinhauser and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report.


Filed under: Joe Biden • Nevada
soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. GROVER NORQUIST IS A ENEMY OF THE STATE/Dutch, Bad Newz, VA

    Go get him Joe!!! That AZ law can apply to Willard. SHOW US YOUR PAPERS!!!

    July 10, 2012 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  2. Patriot Awesome

    Ha! This is total payback for hounding Obama for his birth certificate.

    July 10, 2012 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  3. Michael B.

    Mitt Romney and all Republicans except Donald Trump believe Obama was born in Hawaii to one of his father's wives.

    July 10, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  4. Sandy

    "show your papers". Love it! If the President of the United States has to show the racists his birth certificate, Romney should at the very least show the American people 5+ years of his tax returns. We are after all, interviewing him for the highest office in the land.

    July 10, 2012 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  5. Marty

    Keep trying to take the focus off Obama's failures.
    No more Obama!

    July 10, 2012 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  6. Namejkane fl SEND THE THREE TIME LOSER romney HOME AND MAKE IT FOUR.

    Yah ,10%to the moron church ,what else?????romney the clown and the republican bafoon party aren't going to make it this year ,try 3012 maybe .

    July 10, 2012 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  7. WiredweirdinSF

    Gotta laugh. The most corrupt, inept, incompetent, union toady president, still won't reveal his educational record or answer questions about the discrepancy in his social security number and this hair plugged idiot is after Mitt for his tax returns? How absurd and hypocritical, but then they are the democrat liberals.

    July 10, 2012 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  8. Gotta Be Kiddin

    So Romney could turn over 20 years worth of tax returns to McCain in order to be vetted for Vice President but only wants to turn over one year to the American People to become President. Wish someone from McCain's vetting team would "leak" what was in those returns that made them not choose Romney as VP candidate. What in the world scared them so bad that they chose Sarah Palin? Must be some pretty interesting stuff in those returns!

    July 10, 2012 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  9. Lemone

    Go get em Joe!

    July 10, 2012 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  10. KeepinItReal

    Yea, Romney, let us see what you're working with. All talk and no substance. What are you hiding?

    July 10, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  11. Terry

    "I don't even know where they are." Wow! The dude has so much money he can't keep track of it all. Bet he signs the tax return, though. I think that anyone who knows all too painfully well where all their money is should think hard about voting for Mitt.....

    July 10, 2012 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  12. Terry

    I should have said "think hard BEFORE voting for Mitt"....

    July 10, 2012 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  13. independent

    He doesn't cordinate his blind trust investments any more than he cordinates his super pac attack money. What about the old Reagan adage of Trust but Verify?

    July 10, 2012 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  14. Romney Outsource America Jobs

    Romney show us your paper..Romney is the biggest lier in politics history.

    July 10, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  15. wiredokinstl

    romney can simply give one year of returns & say that's it? right & I have no idea about my ONSHORE savings. go ahead mittens–milk before meat

    July 10, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  16. Governor 47th in Job Creation (excluding jobs off-shored to China)

    Willard show us your educational records and long form BC, too. After all, can't have tinfoil troll types like Wiredweird only looking for a one way info dump.
    Go get em Joe!!

    July 10, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  17. Andrew

    Romney is exactly like the masses! He's Just like you!
    "I don't even know where they are" Most people I know who have investments know exactly what they have, or at least close. Only people with too much money have no clue. Romney, the guy with too much money to be able to relate to you!

    July 10, 2012 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  18. Common Cents

    My follow up question to Romney would be that if you are this hands off in handling your own finances, how can you be trusted to handle the American economy. I make sure I know where my investments are. I want to make sure my broker is making responsible decisions. He moved his finances into a blind trust the day before taking office in MA simply to avoid any questions. He is lying through his teeth that he has no idea where they are. What kind of businessman does that?

    July 10, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    Love it. We had to put up with almost 4 years of "Ermahgerd burf surterfikert!!!! It's only fair. Clown shoe's on the other foot now, eh GOPers/Teatrolls? Too bad your beef was tinfoil hatted conspiracy nonsense but the issue of Mittens' personal finances and tax returns is legit. Better luck next time.

    July 10, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  20. Ancient Texan

    When Obama spent millions to seal all of his records from the public, he and his lackey Biden have a real nerve to demand Romney make public his private holdings. More smoke and mirrors from the Chicago mob.

    July 10, 2012 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  21. Reggiedw

    Biden why don't you get off Romney's back? Are you getting nervous now because you may be out of a job come November/12? You had better start looking for one starting npw because maybe at that time there will not be any jobs the way the economy is going under Obama's policies. Romney in 2012!!!!!

    July 10, 2012 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  22. Jonathan Arik

    Educational records for what? Is he applying to enter College?

    July 10, 2012 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  23. Alvin

    I say, Joe Biden: Show us your IQ!! Does anyone in the universe take Joe Biden seriously? Whenever I see him speak I feel like I'm watching a skit from SNL. This administration's mantra was "Hope and Change". It's become "Hype and Blame.....and distract"

    July 10, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  24. i want a mega rich Mormon who hidvilvies money overseas, and a master tax evader as president

    I wanna see this dudes papers too.

    July 10, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  25. Name willardbullock

    Bidien to presdient obama show paper what happened about frauad check scaamm from afrcian amercian
    Afrcian amerciam make too big trouble what about on frauad check scam

    July 10, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
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