Romney firm on tax returns
July 16th, 2012
08:09 AM ET
9 years ago

Romney firm on tax returns

(CNN) – Mitt Romney remained steadfast in his pledge to release only two years of his personal income tax returns Monday following a weekend of increased pressure from Democrats and some Republicans to disclose more of his financial information.

Romney, appearing on Fox News, said his rivals wanted to "make a mountain" out of an issue he regards as inconsequential compared to problems facing many Americans.

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"John McCain ran for president and released two years of tax returns. John Kerry ran for president and his wife, who has hundreds of millions of dollars, she never released her tax returns. Somehow this wasn't an issue," Romney, the presumptive GOP nominee, said in the interview.

"The Obama people keep on wanting more and more and more, more things to pick through, more things for their opposition research to try and make a mountain out of and distort and to be dishonest about," Romney continued, reissuing his pledge to release two years worth of returns.

Over the weekend, Democrats and some Republicans hit Romney for not releasing more tax information, saying having further documentation of Romney's financial holdings would shed light on any offshore investments. Romney released tax returns from 2010, and put out an estimate of his 2011 information in April. He filed an extension with the Internal Revenue Service to file after the April deadline, and has vowed to release the official documents when they're completed by his accountant.

On Sunday, President Barack Obama's senior campaign adviser David Axelrod said on CNN's "State of the Union" such limited disclosure only raised more questions about Romney's financial situation.

"His father said if you release one year, it could be a fluke, it could be just for show," Axelrod said, referring to George Romney, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination ahead of the 1968 election.

Axelrod continued, "I can only conclude, with all these Republicans asking him to release these returns, that whatever is in those returns would be more damaging to his campaign than simply not releasing them."

Some Republicans also began pushing Romney to release for tax information over the weekend, saying it would be politically savvy to release the information to avoid a drawn-out fight with Democrats.

"He should release the tax returns tomorrow. It's crazy," conservative columnist Bill Kristol said on "Fox News Sunday." "You gotta release six, eight, 10 years of back tax returns. Take the hit for a day or two."

On ABC, former George W. Bush aide Matthew Dowd made similar remarks, saying of Romney's tax returns, "There's obviously something there, because if there was nothing there, he would say, 'Have at it.'"

All of this, Romney said Monday, was a distraction from the real issues of the campaign. He said his own campaign was happy to compare itself with Obama's administration on transparency, citing president's use of executive privilege to withhold documents related to the botched Fast and Furious program.

"The administration has shown a serious departure from the transparency from which they suggested we had," Romney said. "And the American people should be calling for that kind transparency."

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Taxes
soundoff (158 Responses)
  1. Irma in North Carolina

    I wonder how long this stuborn fool is going to keep this up. Who does he think he is bu doing this, does he think this will get him in the white house. Lets hope and pray this fool never makes it there.

    July 16, 2012 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  2. SEAL Team Alpha and Omega

    It would be real shame and tragedy if someone out there hacked into Romney's tax returns for the past 15 years and put it all out on the internet for the worked to see, now wouldn't it?

    Mitty Boy's tax returns are his most closely and tightly held secrets. He knows if Americans saw his tax returns that it would instantly end his little game he likes to call "Running for President."

    Whoever unlocks and exposes those records would forever be immortalized in the Cyber Hacker Wall of Fame.

    Come on everybody out there in the world . . . . show us what you got.

    In Jesus name, amen.

    July 16, 2012 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  3. myron8160

    If mitt walk like a duck he will quak like a duck like the flipflopper he is the snake oil saleman he is

    July 16, 2012 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  4. Sandy

    Your taxes ARE relevant! There is a reason we ask for the tax returns of Presidential candidates, Mr. Romney. You are obviously hiding something if you give McCain 23 years of tax returns, but the People get only the one year of taxes you were able to fix up. There is a reason John McCain picked Sarah Palin after taking a look at your finances. You want people to take your business experience seriously, but you don't want us to see how you made your money! Bye bye, Mitt! I hope the Republicans pick someone else at the convention!

    July 16, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  5. mike

    Curious CNN where was all your reporting demanding Obama to release his college transcripts> if it's about transparency shouldn't you do at least 1 article about that. I know you have done hundreds about Romneys taxes and leave out that Bush, Kerry, etc released only 2 years same as Rommey. Oh yeah by the way where is the Gergen and John King articles saying the Bain attacks that Obama is doing is lies.Remember CNN these articles say that 4 sources at Bain including 3 Dems who are working for the Obama re-election committee say that Romney left in Feb 99 just like he says. Oh yeah the article also says that every fact checking site and newspapers have proven Romney is telling the truth. It's funny how quickly you removed that article by John King. I guess it didn't play to your narrative helping Obama. If it doesn't help Obama you won't post it. You are so bias you can't even defend it anymore.

    July 16, 2012 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  6. dlev31

    Just Obama trying to take the focus off his horrific record. He's a great campaigner. I think he would be much more successful at that profession than he is at President of the United States. Just because he's partially black DOES NOT make him a president. Can you not see past his color? He has brought this country to it's knees. We are now anti-religion, anti-American, anti-own identity, trillions upon trillion in debt and NO he did not get that much in debt because of Bush. He has bought everyone's votes by the category he has set you in. If you are black, spanish or gay – he has bought your vote. Shame on you!! This country is where it is because of the people that voted for him. Open your eyes and ears. Do some research. He is a wonderful liar, deceitful and will say and do anything to win, only to make the county worse than when he took it over. Love to win, then doesn't know what to do.

    July 16, 2012 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  7. David Manson

    In 2008 Mitt Romney provided John McCain's election committe with multiple years of his tax records for vetting as a potential VP candidate. I would like to know why he wont release these same records to the public in his bid for the presidency. I am a registered independent voter and think this is a fair question needing an answer.

    July 16, 2012 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  8. EDDIE

    Well then post your tax reports Mitt.Let's be open and honest with the American People Mitt.

    July 16, 2012 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  9. jpmichigan

    Romney being firm on showing only 2010 and 2011 tax returns is equal to Obama NEVER showing his college grades, his doctoral thesis, his law bar results and his various relationships since moving to Chicago in 1990's. Obama is the most secretive of Presidents the American people ever had. Question to Obama. " What happen to your promise of transparency, you pledged in the 2008 campaign?" There are so many inconsisencies in the Obama administration, what are we to believe or trust another 4 years to them.

    July 16, 2012 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  10. J9abacab

    If it's not a big deal, then why not release them? It just shows he's got something to hide!

    July 16, 2012 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  11. Patrick from Minnesota

    Mitt, don't throw stones if you live in a glass house. If you want to see Obama's college transcripts (which he has already published), we wanna see ALL your tax returns since everyone else has done the same.

    July 16, 2012 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  12. rico

    LOVE IT. If it's such a non issue...release them. How many years have the republicans been after Obama over everything from birth certificate to college transcripts? How's it feel? Just release them and show what an upstanding candidate you, lol, lol!!!!

    July 16, 2012 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  13. mike

    CNN is a joke. They demand things from Romney. But ask questions to Obama like what is your favorite color. CNN is still predicting 50%-50% is Walker-Barrett in Wisconsin. HAHAH yeah you were off a little there CNN. Wolf Blitzer was giddy and happy when he reported 50-50 race. Then 10 minutes later with egg on his face he was saaaad reporting Walker won. He was almost crying.

    July 16, 2012 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  14. K

    Okay, I'm a little confused here. Didn't John Kerry file jointly with his wife? Doesn't that mean that her returns have been disclosed as well (I may be wrong)? Also, John McCain wasn't a businessman and didn't have offshore investments with so called 'Blind Trusts' and Swiss bank accounts!
    It's not a question of being a Democrat or Republican here, it's just about transparency. When you're running to be the single most powerful man in the world, I think it's a voters right to know where you're coming from. It may not be the biggest issue now, but if he does have something to hide, I think that would be a pretty big issue to the American people.

    July 16, 2012 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  15. MIttens Rmoney

    I have nothing to hide. You can believe me. I've always held true to what I believe in. I believe in more for me and my wealthy friends. You can take that to the (Cayman Islands) bank.

    July 16, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  16. robertholt

    Oh, come on Mitt. Just release the tax forms that they're asking you to release. Quit making excuses. Are you trying to hide something?

    July 16, 2012 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  17. MikeB

    Surely Obama's 'Agencies' will leak them.

    July 16, 2012 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. Obama 2012 - MOVE Forward America, NOT another round of DUBYA's FAILURES

    What?? Still scared that we'll find out that he's one of the so-called 47% that don't pay Federal Income tax ???

    July 16, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  19. Wyobob

    Got something to hide, mitt?

    July 16, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  20. Johnson

    He has definitely made the decision that the fallout if we see those returns would be more harmful to him than the criticism he receives for not releasing them. There is something really fishy going on here with Mittens and his money trail.

    July 16, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  21. babs

    He's hiding something.

    July 16, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  22. eric

    Follow the money!

    July 16, 2012 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  23. Lynne

    Really Romney? You're gonna talk about transparency when you won't even follow the lead of your OWN FATHER?

    July 16, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  24. Robert

    Mitt has done all he needs to do here. How lets get on with real issues.

    July 16, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  25. Anonymous

    Prophetic words from Newt Gingrich: "We're not going to beat Barack Obama with some guy who has Swiss bank accounts, Cayman Island accounts, owns shares of Goldman Sachs while it forecloses on Florida and is himself a stockholder in Freddie Mae and Freddie Mac while he tries to think that the rest of us are too stupid to put the dots together to understand what this is all about." Newt Gingrich, Mt. Dora, Florida, Jan 26, 2012

    July 16, 2012 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
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