Ryan will release two years of tax returns; says he gave Romney team 'several years'
August 12th, 2012
08:32 PM ET
2 years ago

Ryan will release two years of tax returns; says he gave Romney team 'several years'

(CNN) – Rep. Paul Ryan said Sunday he gave Mitt Romney's vice presidential vetting team "several years" of personal income tax returns, and that he would release two years of those returns to the public – the same number as Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee.

Democrats, as well as some Republicans, have called on Romney to release more than his 2010 and 2011 information, saying the voting public is entitled to know more about a candidate's financial history. Romney has consistently responded by saying his level of disclosure is beyond the legal amount and that two years give a good reflection of his tax situation.

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"It was a very exhaustive vetting process," Ryan said on CBS' "60 Minutes." "It's a confidential vetting process, so there were several years. But I'm going to release the same amount of years that Gov. Romney has."

A spokesman for Ryan later confirmed that the presumptive vice presidential nominee would release two years of income tax returns "as soon as we're ready."

Romney has disclosed his income tax returns from 2010, and released an estimate of his 2011 tax information in April. He has vowed to release 2011's full return one it's completed by his accountant.

Democrats say the lack of disclosure puts Romney at odds with a precedent for presidential candidates set by his father, George, the former Michigan governor who released 12 years of his tax returns when running for president in 1968.

Some Republican observers, including the editorial pages of the National Review and the New Hampshire Union Leader, have urged Romney to release more of his returns to quiet the political debate.

Ryan said Sunday that voters weren't interested in his or Romney's taxes, and were looking for the two presidential campaigns to return to substantive issues of economic policies.

"What I hear from people around this country, they're not asking, 'Where are the tax returns?' They're asking where the jobs are. 'Where's the economic growth?' Those are the issues that matter," Ryan said.

The calls for more disclosure "are more or less distractions to try and take us off the fact that the president has given us failed policies that aren't working," Ryan said, saying the Republican campaign would instead "focus on what it takes to turn this country around and get people back to work."

CNN National Political Correspondent Jim Acosta contributed to this report.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Paul Ryan • Taxes
soundoff (286 Responses)
  1. Darryl

    Romney needs to cough-up several years also. It isn't going away anytime soon.

    August 12, 2012 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  2. newshead12

    They will all be leaked eventually.

    August 12, 2012 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  3. labman57

    Moral of the story: Two wrongs make a right wing policy.

    August 12, 2012 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  4. Joseph B

    Pathetic....

    August 12, 2012 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  5. fekt

    Just because you think you can set a standard doesn't mean voters have to accept it. Romney is hiding his taxes and this lame move won't deflect the issue. Rather, you're going to draw more attention to it. Ryan was a poor choice. He's consolidating a base that was already going to vote for him. I suppose he's just trying to get the more apathetic out of their houses. As for drawing any new voters from the moderates and undecided, I'm sure he has successfully made sure those either stay home or vote obama.

    August 12, 2012 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  6. AnneSD

    "What I hear from people around this country, they're not asking, 'Where are the tax returns?' They're asking where the jobs are. 'Where's the economic growth?' Those are the issues that matter," Ryan said.

    Actually, the voters are asking for both. This is not an either/or situation. We want to know both the detailed plan for fixing the economy AND enough information about the candidates to decide if they have sufficient integrity to lead the nation.

    August 12, 2012 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  7. Randy, San Francisco

    Forget Ryan's tax records, America wants to see tax returns for the 10 years Romney paid no taxes.

    August 12, 2012 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  8. Ed

    Why would he when he has not paid any taxes. They don't get rick by paying taxes. They have tax shelters.

    August 12, 2012 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  9. Ed

    To me this is wrong with this country...
    Tax cheats....

    August 12, 2012 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  10. BIGDOC

    As an independent voter I say that if Mitt Romney doesn't release his tax returns for at least the past 10 years he can't be elected and he may not if he does depending on whay they reveal.By not releasing them he definitely gives the appearence something is being covered up or hidden.This will not go away.

    August 12, 2012 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  11. Julius Raynor

    Why not just release the back taxes?......Majority of the people think you are hiding something when you refuse to do something that has been the norm......Can not trust Romney!

    August 12, 2012 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  12. Wise1Speak

    NO SURPRISE – (AS GEORGE ROMNEY TURNED OVER IN HIS GRAVE IN DIGUST OF HIS SON MITT)

    The Romney machine is ensuring that the young charismatic Paul Ryan does not outshine Mitt Romney. For Ryan to turn over several years of taxes and for Romney to okay only the release of Ryan's last two years, shows how slippery and pathetically wretched "Richie-Rich Romney" is all about.

    Romney won't release his tax forms because it will show he has 'betted & invested' against the U.S. and her interest. A decade of Romney tax forms will show that he paid little to no taxes for years, but he has the audacity to want to take the helm of a country that he worked hard to extract jobs from and to ship American jobs to China.

    August 12, 2012 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  13. Spock500

    It looks like two years' worth of tax records will be the new (albeit lower) standard for presidential and vice-presidential nominees from this point onwards. What a shining example. Way to go there, Republicans!

    August 12, 2012 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  14. Kdawg

    CNN wants the presidential race to be decided by who posts the most years of tax returns. Brilliant.

    August 12, 2012 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  15. Guido

    Easy to know what Paul Ryan claimed in taxes for the past 15 years, he has worked for the government for all of it. In other words, he is what he rails against.

    August 12, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  16. Trump Assistant

    Ryan and Romney must think most Americans are idiots, they are hiding a lot, showing just two years, it"s a joke!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 12, 2012 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  17. IRS Investigator

    Two years of tax returns? That's hilarious!!!!

    Ryan just handed the election to President Obama.

    Thank you!!!!

    August 12, 2012 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  18. Zil Zerimar

    Another tax cheat?

    August 12, 2012 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  19. Mr. Moderate

    So why Obama held to different standards? Can you imagine the outrage is Obama only released two years? He is the only president is American history who had to show his long firm birth certificate, even though the short form is acceptable everywhere. Now the right wants his college transcripts, something that has not been demanded from any other president?

    August 12, 2012 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  20. bspurloc

    u mean PARTIAL returns.
    Hi we are running on closing tax loopholes but dont want to show ALL the loopholes mittens 9000 accountants found for him.....

    August 12, 2012 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  21. krehator

    What is Romney still afraid of?

    August 12, 2012 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  22. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Ryan said Sunday that voters weren't interested in his or Romney's taxes, and were looking for the two presidential campaigns to return to substantive issues of economic policies."

    Oh, goody. Another GOPer telling me what he thinks I ought to think, without bothering to understand that how I "think" is paramount to how I vote. Generally speaking, I don't like being "slapped" around by those who want my vote, regardless of how they might interpret my "curiosity" as being relevant in their own minds.

    "Rep. Paul Ryan said Sunday he gave Mitt Romney's vice presidential vetting team "several years" of personal income tax returns, and that he would release two years of those returns to the public – the same number as Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee."

    Guess Mitt Romney needs to clarify his "what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander" messaging. I'm not getting where he's going with it, or who it applies to. Apparently it was just another of his "etch-a-sketch-moments-gone-wrong cover-up. Fact is, the dude has yet to release even two years of tax returns, and his boy wonder in all probablity won't be releasing his either. To do so would undermine that Romney hasn't.

    Begging the question: Mitt Romney, what are you hiding?

    August 12, 2012 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  23. Dave

    Now Romney is going to use his own running mate as an excuse for not releasing more of his records. Sad. Predictable. Obvious.

    August 12, 2012 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  24. Anthony A

    "What I hear from people around this country, they're not asking, 'Where are the tax returns?"

    So he is going to tell us what we are saying? If we were not interested in his returns he would not have to answer the question about why he is not divulging his returns....

    August 12, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  25. Keith

    Ryan is a LIAR "Ryan said Sunday that voters weren't interested in his or Romney's taxes". I am a voter and I am interested in Romney's tax returns.

    August 12, 2012 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
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