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. Steve- Illinois

    Libs just hate success! Or at least those more successfull than they are!

    July 10, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  2. Bill

    Blind trust? Thats what helped Obama become president.

    July 10, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  3. TPF

    Millions of Americans have Blind Trusts and it is perfectly legal. Obama has to go or all of your hard earned savings will.

    July 10, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  4. v_mag

    A guy wants to vote? Make him prove he is a citizen, say Repugnants.

    A guy wants to be president? We don't care whether he pays his taxes or not, say Repugnants.

    Wow. That's some twisted logic.

    July 10, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  5. Sorensen

    Of course the old flip-flopper does not want to show anybody his papers. Because they would prove that he is desparately trying to hide all his funny money from everybody. Probably even from the mormons. That would cost him
    10%!!.
    Does anybody really want this little fake person to be President???

    July 10, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    They will never press Mittens for anything that they have pressed President Obama for.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Tell the truth and shame the Devil baby!

    July 10, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  7. Governor 47th in Job Creation (excluding jobs off-shored to China)

    @ Ridiculous. Uh huh. Blind trust alright. Just like his shell company was not set up before then (it was) ....just like it didn't have anything but an inconvenient coincidence that it went in for 10mil into Tagg's venture....just like Willard's not active in Bain any longer....
    easy way to disprove all of it: open it up, stop the secrecy

    July 10, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  8. cj1

    Unfortunately most all of you are blinded by what the media plays up. Romney hasn't broken any rules

    July 10, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  9. ThinkAgain

    The Flip-Flopper strikes again!

    Back in 1994, when Mittens was running against Sen. Edward Kennedy, Mittens was skeptical of the idea that a politician could use a blind trust to preempt inevitable questions about his investment choices and potential conflicts:

    Mittens to the :Boston Globe in 1994: "The blind trust is an age-old ruse."

    Funny how in 2003, as he prepared to take office as governor of Massachusetts, Mittens placed his family's funds in his own blind trust to avoid whatever accusations could surface (a "blind" trust managed by his personal lawyer ... blind – HA!). And Mittens has been using the blind trust excuse ever since!

    Show us your tax returns!!!

    July 10, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  10. livingston

    I love it when Biden gets going! Nothing 'politically correct about him! He says and asks the questions that the average person would if Romney would even acknowledge we were alive! Go get him Biden!

    July 10, 2012 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  11. Ron

    Be careful what you ask for Mr Bidden....it could come back and bite you. I bet its only a matter of days when this blows over and the truth comes out. Romney didn't become the choosen one of the Republican Party without some serious vetting.

    July 10, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  12. ThinkAgain

    Who is the trustee of Mittens' supposed "blind trust"? Why it's none other than Mittens' personal lawyer!

    Anyone who thinks Mittens is in the dark about where his money is is a fool!

    July 10, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  13. blahahahaaaa

    Can someone tell me why CNN chooses to post the same commentors everytime, sometime mulitiple times, but doesn't post all comments as long as they are within the guidelines. My comments are always put into moderation all day, and than removed without being posted.

    July 10, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  14. Dean

    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.

    This is the same thing that happens to all those mutual funds and retirement accounts that you liberals have. Vanguard or Fidelity or T Rowe Price make the investments, not you. Get over it. Wealth didn't bother you when Mr. Ketchup ran or when Kennedy was president.

    If you had $100,000 to invest for your future would you let Obama invest it or Romney?

    July 10, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    Mitt Romney meets the description of a "job creator".
    I wish someone would ask him how many employees he has, not including his campaign staff.

    July 10, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  16. thinkergal

    I love you, Joe Biden!

    July 10, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  17. Dean

    Martin

    What makes me laugh is that Romney sees no issue giving 10% of his money to the church (a TAX to be a member) but won't pay the required taxes to the Government

    What makes me laugh is the proof you have that Romney hasn't paid all the taxes that the givernment requires.

    July 10, 2012 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  18. Woman In California

    @ Jerry.

    You are a TOTAL liar. You have said in some of your previous posts you were a democrat but voted republican in 2008. Now you have the nerve to say "at this point, I am inclined to vote for Mr. Romney". The truth is you would vote for any person of non color and you know it. Why don't you at least admit it?

    July 10, 2012 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  19. the omni potent one

    Has Biden shown his papers? How about OBs grades, papers, and applications? How is it ok to be such a huge hypocrite in all your liberals eyes?

    July 10, 2012 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  20. Big Al

    Tax cuts for the wealthy and nothing for the poor!

    Time to make the top tax rate 70% on incomes above $100,000. All African Americans should be exempt from all taxes for 15 years.

    July 10, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  21. GI Joe

    Never trust a Mormon.

    July 10, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  22. Angela

    @Ridiculous. A quote by Romney in 2004 – "The idea that blind trusts are independent from their investors is a false notion.

    “A blind trust is an age-old ruse, if you will,” said Romney. “You can always tell the blind trust what it can and cannot do. You give a blind trust rules.”

    July 10, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  23. American

    Romney is evading investments in America by hiding his accounts overseas. Mitt is the ONLY presidential candidate to invest in Swiss banks instead of the USA.

    By refusing to release his tax returnS, Romney is breaking precedent with EVERY presidential candidate since his father.

    Show us your papers, Romney.

    July 10, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  24. David in FL

    K I love this:

    If you had $100,000 to invest for your future would you let Obama invest it or Romney?

    July 10, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  25. John

    When Obama releases his college transcripts, Romney should release all of his financial information. No chance of THAT happening!

    July 10, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
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