Mitt Romney suggested in an interview Tuesday that he would retain popular income tax deductions for home mortgages and charitable deductions, but refused to say specifically how he would balance out a cut in overall tax rates.
Speaking to CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Romney insisted that President Obama is “completely wrong” to say that the Republican nominee wants to cut taxes by $5 trillion. He declined to put a dollar figure on the cuts, however, and said only that they would be balanced out by limiting deductions, simplifying the tax code and stimulating growth in the economy.
“I want to make it simpler, fairer. I want to encourage the economy to grow again,” he said. Pressed on whether he would eliminate the deductions for home mortgages and charitable contributions, he said, “There will, of course, continue to be preferences for those kinds of expenses.”
Tax experts have questioned how Romney can find enough deductions to make up the money that would be lost through a 20% cut in the overall tax rate -- the figure the GOP candidate has used in the past. And some have suggested that if he is able to find enough ways to limit deductions, the result would be to raise taxes on the middle class while lowering them for the wealthy. Repeating the argument he made in his recent debate with Obama, Romney insisted that would not be the case. He refused, however, to mention specifics.