Romney: ‘Big businesses are doing fine’
August 24th, 2012
01:10 AM ET
2 years ago

Romney: ‘Big businesses are doing fine’

(CNN) – In calling for a broader, simplified tax code, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Friday that bigger businesses, in knowing how to utilize loopholes in the tax code, are "doing fine in many places" compared to small businesses.

"We've got to make it easier for small businesses," Romney told a crowd of about 300 people at a high-dollar fundraiser in Minnesota. "Big business is doing fine in many places -they get the loans they need, they can deal with all the regulation. They know how to find ways to get through the tax code, save money by putting various things in the places where there are low tax havens around the world for their businesses. But small business is getting crushed."

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Romney's running mate Paul Ryan made similar comments in an interview earlier Friday, also in arguing for what the duo says would be a tax code more conductive to a competitive economic system.

"By plugging loopholes, which are uniquely enjoyed by higher income individuals, you're reducing their ability to shelter their income from taxation," Ryan said. "Therefore, more of their income is subject to taxation and that allows us to lower tax rates for everybody in America–families, small businesses."

The Romney and Ryan plan includes proposals that primarily emphasize reducing tax rates while maintaining tax breaks for savings and investment. More specifically, the plan calls for an extension for all of the Bush tax cuts, including a tax break on an annual income of more than $250,000. The Republicans' plan also calls for reducing the individual income tax rate by 20%, eliminating the estate tax, eliminating the alternative minimum tax, and reducing the corporate income tax.

The Obama administration has attacked Romney's tax proposal as detrimental to the middle class. Obama has rejected the Republican supported tax proposal while calling for an extension of the Bush tax cuts only on income of under $250,000 and, furthermore, tapping wealthier individuals to pay a higher tax rate, which he calls the Buffett Rule.

"Here's the thing, he's not asking you to contribute more to pay down the deficit, or to invest in our kids' education. He's asking you to pay more so that people like him can get a tax cut," Obama said this month at a campaign event in Mansfield, Ohio, pointing to a report by the Tax Policy Center that concludes that Romney's economic plan would provide large tax cuts to high-income households while increasing the tax burdens on low to middle income taxpayers.

The Romney campaign took issue with the study, saying that it doesn't take into account the Republican candidate's full tax program and ignores benefits created by the corporate tax plan and proposal for deficit reduction in the Romney plan.

Romney's personal finances have been a topic on the campaign trail since the former Massachusetts governor and successful businessman entered the presidential race.

Critics have cited Romney's off-shore account holdings as evidence of the former Bain Capital executive's willingness to use loopholes in the tax code to his benefit. His financial disclosures suggest his net worth is as high as $264 million, making him one of the wealthiest candidates in history to seek the U.S. presidency.

Additionally, Romney's refusal to release more years of tax returns have fueled Democrats attacks that the presumptive GOP nominee is playing by a different set of rules.

Romney has released tax returns from 2010 and an estimate for 2011, thus far, refusing to release more years of returns.

Romney and his campaign have rejected the calls for more financial transparency as a ploy from the Obama campaign to avoid talking about major issues facing the nation like the economy.

Romney's comments may stir political memories of a comment made by Obama in a June news conference saying "the private sector's doing fine." The Romney campaign seized on the comment using the gaffe as evidence that the president is out-of-touch with the ailing economy.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Taxes
soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. Norm

    I think this should show everyone that Romney cares only for the rich and business owners, not the average hard working American.
    But then we already knew this.

    August 24, 2012 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  2. ishiibrad

    You should know this Romney,you`ve been ripping off our country for your whole life !

    August 24, 2012 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  3. Matt

    Big business are doing fine because they outsource.

    August 24, 2012 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  4. KNKLHEAD

    Whoa. I wonder what affect Romneys drastic tax cuts will have on the defecit. (Remember the Bush tax cuts and the wars he started simultaneosuly?) Obama's proposal to give EVERYONE a tax break on the first $250,000 (this includes rich people) makes way more sense and immediatley helps the deficit.

    We really want Romney experimenting with all these tax cuts as president?

    August 24, 2012 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  5. Awetmedic

    Tell me again why we should care about how well the 1% 'ers (not even close to 1%) are doing? He congratulated BB on being able to have a tax code so complicated that only the mega rich can get tax breaks.

    August 24, 2012 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  6. WatchDawg

    So what Mitts is saying...is big business should mentor smaller business in learning the legal loopholes of the tax code so they won't have to pay taxes either...

    August 24, 2012 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  7. Abadone

    wow, big business is doing "fine" because of greed...that is all

    August 24, 2012 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  8. Lookbothweis

    WHICH tax loopholes will he plug, and why do they need tax breaks before he can plug the loopholes?

    August 24, 2012 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  9. news reader

    Romney wants to run this country using his Bain Capital experience. Bain would come into a solvent but needing help company. They first fire as many workers as possible. Then leverage the company -meaning borrow millions . Then they pull out. Romney did not lie when he said they left the Co. solvent. However when the loans became due, the Company could not pay them since Bain took their 2 to 4 million each partner profit. Then the Company has no choice but go Bankrupt. The employees lose their jobs, health ins. and pensions. Bain comes back in and sells off the business personal property using that to repay a tiny portion of the debts only because they must. Then they keep the pension funds. Then Bain uses the full value of the Co. for a Tax Deduction. If they don,t need the full amount that year they use it next year. Legal but not ethical. If Romney runs this Country the same way the top 1% will pay no income tax . Our economy and Country will bankrupt and We The People will pay.

    August 24, 2012 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
  10. liberal disease

    it is nice to listen to someone who actually has experience

    August 24, 2012 08:47 am at 8:47 am |
  11. rf

    What's does a man with 264 million have in common with the likes of me, who isn't even sure I can buy groceries next week for my own family? Answer nothing. Sorry , we need someone who knows hunger , paying rent , living without lights, or preparing to die at home so you don't bankrupt your family because in medical dept. These are the decisions the working poor face. Not that anyone gives a hoot in hell. Then again I would don't give a rat behind about them either. Barek is the only hope for the poor and this time we all know it .

    August 24, 2012 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  12. Rudy NYC

    "...a report by the Tax Policy Center that concludes that Romney's economic plan would provide large tax cuts to high-income households while increasing the tax burdens on low to middle income taxpayers.

    The Romney campaign took issue with the study, saying that it doesn't take into account the Republican candidate's full tax program and ignores benefits created by the corporate tax plan and proposal for deficit reduction in the Romney plan."
    -------------------–
    Doesn't take into account the full tax program, etc. Hogwash. The group evaluated exactly what the Romney campaign furnished them. What benefits for the middle class are created by lowering corporate taxes. Romney's proposal for deficit reduction doesn't balance the annual budget for at least 20 years, by some estimates 30-40 years. Pres. Obama was HANDED an annual deficit of $1.5 trillion, and has cut that by $400 billion in 3 years. At that rate, the budget would balance in less than 10 years, even if unemployment remains over 8%.

    August 24, 2012 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  13. Daniel

    I'm sure his lawyers have found every loophole there is to insure that he does not have to pay his fair share. Greed is a very insidious malady.

    August 24, 2012 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  14. rosethornne

    Romneyhood, show us the tax returns.

    August 24, 2012 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  15. Jimbo

    Big businesses are doing fine = the CEOs and boards continue to fire thousands of people at a time solely to give themselves vast raises. As long as my buddies are raking it in who cares about the people being fired just to service their greed ?

    August 24, 2012 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  16. Malory Archer

    Wait a minute.... Didn't the tighty righties go apoplectic when President Obama said the same thing a few months ago? Where's the outrage tighty wingnuts?

    August 24, 2012 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  17. russ

    not surprised that BIG business is doing fine. I'm surprised he admitted it. I guess that's why his friends, the Koch brothers are trying to buy him an election.

    August 24, 2012 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  18. Boo

    By all means....let's give tax breaks to the wealthiest and to hell with the rest of us proles. Who in their right mind would vote for these elitist fascists except the wealthiest?

    August 24, 2012 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  19. xedder

    Poor Mitt... He can't help it... It's not his fault he was born with a silver foot 'n his mouth!!!

    August 24, 2012 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  20. Plutocratz

    Well looks like Romney and Ryan are finally waking up and smelling the liberal coffee that Obama and the Dems forgot to drink these past 4 years.

    Is Romney now the new Democratic candidate who's pledging to redistribute wealth to help small businesses?

    August 24, 2012 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  21. LexyconDTruth22

    Every time Mr. Romney tries to explain his position, I get images of that old character Victor Victoria, the one with two faces. For months I kept hearing that President Obama was out of touch because of a very similar comment about "the private sector". Once Republicans and "Romney Romneia" realized it didn't gain traction they figured it was safe to admit what everyone has known for a while...

    August 24, 2012 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  22. TY

    Really Mitt, small business are your concerns, yea right. Your focus is big business and making monies. Small Business don't get it twisted Unfitt Mitt will eat you up like pac man........yum yum more monies in big business pockets.

    August 24, 2012 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  23. Gail

    You DO NOT really think that Romney and all his rich supporters and cronies would actually do something that would reduce their ability to shelter their income from taxes, do you??? Wise up people.

    By plugging loopholes, which are uniquely enjoyed by higher income individuals, you're reducing their ability to shelter their income from taxation," Ryan said. "Therefore, more of their income is subject to taxation and that allows us to lower tax rates for everybody in America–families, small businesses."

    August 24, 2012 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  24. lolo

    We already know this Romneyhood and we already know that you are backing them all the way. You and your rich buddies have already laid down the plan not to let anything change until you are elected president which will never happen. We know that they are holding onto their profits until after the election. Only your GOP/TP base does not get the picture yet.

    August 24, 2012 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  25. gopyoyo

    So Mit and Paul Show they really are out of touch with the US economy. Their lack of common sense blaming the president for similar comments is pathetic. What a failure Mit is for a man that pretend as a businessman he can fix the US economy!

    August 24, 2012 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
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