Super PAC ad hammers Romney on taxes
August 17th, 2012
01:45 PM ET
2 years ago

Super PAC ad hammers Romney on taxes

(CNN) – The super PAC backing President Barack Obama launched an online ad on Friday reminding viewers that Mitt Romney has rejected calls to release more than two years of tax returns, and claiming that a plan offered by his running mate, Paul Ryan, would reduce his tax rate to 1%.

The spot, from Priorities USA, uses clips from Romney's press conference on Thursday in South Carolina, when he told reporters that he's paid 13% in taxes for the past decade.

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"The fascination with taxes I paid I find to be very small minded," Romney is shown saying.

"I've paid at least 13%," he continues in the spot.

A narrator jumps in, claiming that "under one of Paul Ryan's budget plans, Romney would pay only 1%. That's right. Mitt Romney's worth $200 million, but under Paul Ryan's budget, he'd pay only 1% in taxes while middle class families would pay $1,000 more."

"Romney and Ryan: If they win, the middle class loses," the narrator concludes.

Priorities USA cites analysis of Ryan's House GOP Budget plan, which proposes eliminating taxes on interest, capital gains, and dividends. The two years of tax information that Romney has released, from 2010 and 2011, indicate that the majority of his income – $21.7 million in 2010 – came from long-term capital gains.

Romney has not indicated specifically which parts of Ryan's plan he supports and which parts he would change. Romney's website indicates that he would maintain current tax rates on interest, dividends, and capital gains, while enacting a "permanent, across-the-board 20 percent cut in marginal rates."

Bill Burton, a co-founder of Priorities USA, said in a statement that under a Romney presidency, wealthy people like Romney would be awarded a lower tax rate.

"Mitt Romney already pays a lower tax rate than many middle class families, but with Romney-Ryan economics he would pay even less," Burton wrote. "The Romney-Ryan ticket would not only protect a tax system that already benefits the wealthiest like Romney over middle class Americans, it would be taken from the paychecks of millions of middle class families."

In declaring he's paid more than 13% in taxes on Thursday, Romney was describing his effective tax rate, or the percentage of actual income he gave to the federal government. Over the past two years, Romney's effective tax rate was 14.5%, based on the records he's revealed already. Some 80% of Americans have an effective rate below 15%, according to the Tax Policy Center.

Effective tax rates are always lower than top income tax rates, due to credits, deductions and exemptions that cancel out all or much of the income tax many Americans would otherwise owe.

Priorities USA said its ad would run online in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania and Virginia – all battleground states. The pro-Obama super PAC is the same group that produced a much-maligned spot connecting Romney's tenure at Bain Capital to the death of a steel worker's wife. The ad never ran as a paid advertisement on television, apart from a single airing in Ohio after a station error. It did, however, air repeatedly on cable news.

“This is another false ad from a widely-denounced group with zero credibility," Romney campaign spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg wrote in response to the latest Priorities USA ad. "There’s only one candidate in this race who has promised to raise taxes – Barack Obama. Mitt Romney supports revenue-neutral tax reform that lowers rates across the board – for all taxpayers – and maintains the progressivity of the current code. President Obama’s failed policies have led to record-level unemployment and 23 million Americans struggling for work. Mitt Romney’s Plan for a Stronger Middle Class will mean more jobs, more take-home pay, and a stronger economy.”

CNNMoney's Jennifer Liberto contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Mitt Romney • Priorities USA • Taxes
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. ThinkAgain: Under the Ryan Plan, Romney Pays 0.87% in taxes

    Mittens and Munster look like their about to play some tongue hockey ...

    August 17, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  2. Obama - Ending the American Dream as We Know It

    Kenny K – We do care about Romney's tax returns because those are reflections of his tax policies.
    =======================================================================

    Are you serious? They are a reflection of nearly a hundred years of tax laws he didn't write but abides by. They have ZERO to do with his future plans. You are as clueless as Obama, which sort of figures.

    August 17, 2012 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  3. ThinkAgain: Under the Ryan Plan, Romney Pays 0.87% in taxes

    To all you in love with Mittens and Munster: If GOP policies are so great, then why at the end of 8 years of them under Bush our economy was tanking, we were shedding about 800,000 jobs a month, the Dow was at 7,000, Osama bin Laden was still at large, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were still going full force?

    If President Obama's policies are so bad, then why have we had 29 straight months of private sector job growth, the Dow is over 13,000, Osama bin Laden is DEAD, and we're out of Iraq and getting out of Afghanistan?

    *crickets*

    August 17, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  4. mikle

    Where is interest on school record for Obama. I got phone call, where women has it that Obama was inter... exchange student. He claim he was from Another country.

    August 17, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  5. ThinkAgain: Under the Ryan Plan, Romney Pays 0.87% in taxes

    @V in response to Hammerer: "then you've been asleep for the last four years and should not be allowed to vote!!"

    No, he/she/it and other of his/hers/its ilk have been listening only to Fox, Limbaugh, Hannity, etc., who've been lying to them.

    See, the GOP/Karl Rove figured out that these folks are easy to manipulate by having their candidates say they are pro-gun, anti-gay and anti-choice. Throw in a little fear and paranoia about the black man in the White House and voila! You've got folks running to the polls to vote for people and policies that are PROVEN FAILURES.

    All these saps have left is their pride – and they will cling to that until they are cold in the grave before they will ever admit they've been duped and betrayed by the GOP.

    Pitiful ...

    August 17, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain: Under the Ryan Plan, Romney Pays 0.87% in taxes

    @Obama – Ending yada yada: "They are a reflection of nearly a hundred years of tax laws he didn't write but abides by. They have ZERO to do with his future plans."

    You and Mittens and everyone knows the reason Mittens doesn't have his father's stone and won't release more than two years of tax returns is then everyone would see that American tax laws favors the wealthy over everyone else. Average Americans would be outraged – and would see Mittens has ABSOLUTELY NO INCENTIVE to change the tax code to make it more fair.

    Mittens has already gone on record saying he would LOWER taxes for those at the top. If everyone knew how little he has been paying, Mittens and Munster would be TOAST!

    August 17, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  7. myviewis

    Obama – Ending the American Dream as We Know It

    Kenny K – We do care about Romney's tax returns because those are reflections of his tax policies.
    ---------------------------

    We can conclude that you don't do taxes but the IRS would be thrilled to know how your theory works that one's taxes are a reflection of one's tax policies.

    August 17, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    ThinkAgain: Under the Ryan Plan, Romney Pays 0.87% in taxes

    Mittens and Munster look like their about to play some tongue hockey ...
    -----------------
    Oh! I had thought that was Herman and Eddie in the picture.

    August 17, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  9. Tyrone

    A Candidate that got BUSTED Cheating on where he lived while Gov of Mass. The mans got 0 integrity & is a lowlife who s not fit fr the highest office. Lyin sac of SHI–!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 17, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  10. Pete

    @Obama,Ending the americanDream,you're a delushional idiot,Navy Seals were sent in with his authority,nobody else and his asking his commanders for info,remember that doctor that was a spy,smartass that helped find Bin Ladens house.Bush only talked about ending the war,the one he created with Cheney with lies,his past commanders said nothing in stone.Chrysler paid off their debt and GM is working out some deals to make more money,if it weren't done nitwit we would be in a depression,not recession..It's your obstructionistic republicans in congress remember that set a record for fillibusters,check it out,no job bills,no infastructure,the lies your republicans ran on in 2010 remember!!ACA bill,when its actually working people like you will be happy he created this bill,not one republican has ever created anything that benefitted the American people ,nada,zilch,nothing!!The equal pay act,the Ledbedder act does what it says making equal pay for men and women doing the same type of work,try it out there buddy if you're paying a woman less you'll see..He'd do a lot more to help Americans if it weren't for your party of "NO"and after November we probibly don't have to worry about it because they'll be gone,nice job big guys,shot yourselves in the foot again, ha republicans!!

    August 17, 2012 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  11. John B

    Who gives a crap about Romney's taxes. We have an economy and unemployment to worry about. I wish Obama would spend more time talking about his accomplishments from the last 4 years than spending time worrying about his opponent. His slogan should be, "give me four more years so I can fix the last four." Here is what the Seal Team 6 has to say about Obama, just released yesterday: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-Xfti7qtT0

    August 17, 2012 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  12. db

    Are you serious? according to "Bush Tax Cut ..there should have been 15 million new jobs by 2008when Bush was in the White House ..instead we lost 800,000 monthly...wake up you GOP fools it did not work then it will not work now...wake up you fools.

    August 17, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  13. Rudy NYC

    If the Romney/Ryan Plan for Medicare will save Medicare, balance the budget, and reduce long term debt, then why wait a decade before you implement it?

    August 17, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  14. Tyrone

    It is a known fact that Richie rich romney commited a crime & got off scott free for lying bout being a utah citizen to save a few MILL on His US Taxes. He is a Low life dirtbag POS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 17, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  15. rob

    Attacking Romney on his tax returns and scaring peiople about Medicare is no solution to the long term problems facing this country.

    This is all they have folks.

    Very, very sad.

    August 17, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  16. Rudy NYC

    The VoucherCare Plan in the Romney/Ryan plan does not calculate in the costs of transitioning over to a voucher and the annual cost to implement it. It ignores most all of the real words stuff called logistics. VoucherCare would cost more to implement than what it is "projected" to save. In other words, it would bankrupt Medicare faster than if they simply left it alone. These are the types of oversights that creep into the budget when you "don't run the numbers."

    August 17, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  17. v_mag

    Romney founded Bain with $9M from Salvadorans who backed the death squads that killed 75,000 people in the Reagan years. Earlier, St. Ronald sent billions in aid to the Salvadoran government (i.e., these same Salvadorans) to help them kill their own people.

    (Did American taxpayer money, laundered in El Salvador, help Bain get started?)

    Now we find that Elliott Abrams, Reagan's guy who helped facilitate the killings, and who is still unrepentant, is Ryan's tutor on foreign affairs.

    Isn't it funny how Repugnants always wind up being tied to 3rd world dictators and the atrocities they commit? And it's even funnier that low-life Repugnants here continue to support mass murderers.

    August 17, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  18. Hammerer

    V
    Still you nor anyone else can name anything positive about Obama's record.
    Just tax the 1% and Ronmey's taxes.

    August 17, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  19. Four and The Door

    Rudy NYC
    The VoucherCare Plan in the Romney/Ryan plan does not calculate in the costs of transitioning over to a voucher and the annual cost to implement it. It ignores most all of the real words stuff called logistics. VoucherCare would cost more to implement than what it is "projected" to save. In other words, it would bankrupt Medicare faster than if they simply left it alone. These are the types of oversights that creep into the budget when you "don't run the numbers."
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hardly. But good try. The Ryan Plan for premium support not only will save Medicare from going broke, but it will improve the quality of care. Think about it. In the existing system the health care provider gets paid the same for lousy care as they do for excellent care. But with premium support the provider has to compete for your business. You choose. They need to work harder for your business on both cost and quality. But if you want to you can choose to stay with the existing system. But people who do that probably don't care any more about quality than Obama does.

    August 17, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
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