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TomClash

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Member since: Sat Sep 4, 2004, 10:01 PM
Number of posts: 11,344

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It's wealthy white power night in Tampa

The 1967 Pleasantville Prom Queen is on the Float. And the Fat Man ain't even joined the band yet.

Quad City Times (IA) - Dear Gov. Romney: Answer these questions

Dear Gov. Romney: Answer these questions

By Bill Davison, Eldridge

Why not release your tax returns like the 12 years your father did? Do you really have 23 offshore bank accounts?

How have your IRA accounts accumulated an estimated $21-100 million value?

. . .

Why did Newt describe Bain as “A bunch of rich people figuring out clever legal ways to loot a company”?

Is tax avoidance as American as apple pie?

Should all Americans aspire to park their fortunes in foreign tax havens?

. . .

ttp://qctimes.com/news/opinion/mailbag/dear-gov-romney-answer-these-questions/article_dce9d98c-ec6c-11e1-8178-0019bb2963f4.html

Bloomberg News: Republican Platform Won’t Protect Mortgage Tax Deduction

Source: Bloomberg News/Business Week

Republican platform drafters refused to put their party on record for preserving the mortgage- interest deduction, giving Mitt Romney more flexibility to promote his plan to lower tax rates paid by corporations and the wealthiest Americans without increasing the federal debt.

The platform panel, meeting in Tampa, Florida, in advance of the Aug. 27 Republican National Convention, defeated a proposed mortgage deduction amendment by a show of hands as it moved toward today’s scheduled completion of the draft statement of positions the party will offer voters in the November election.

The document, which was also amended to include a call for Federal Reserve audits, will be submitted next week for approval by the full convention.

The mortgage interest vote was a shift in Republican policy from four years ago, when the party platform said that “because affordable housing is in the national interest, any simplified tax system should continue to encourage homeownership, recognizing the tremendous social value that the home mortgage interest deduction has had for decades.”

Read more: http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-08-20/republican-platform-won-t-protect-mortgage-tax-deduction



That's a tax increase on every middle class homeowner with a mortgage, so Mitt can lower his taxes.

Utah Policy.com: Is Mitt Romney Hiding Something About His Tithing?

Is Mitt Romney Hiding Something About His Tithing?
by Bob Bernick 08/20/2012

I must confess I’m a bit perplexed by GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s continued refusal to release more of his personal income tax returns.

Just about every leading Republican is telling Romney to do so.

. . .

Here’s my guess (and I stress it is only a guess).

Romney doesn’t want to release his taxes not because he hasn’t paid “at least” 13 percent over the last 10 years; it’s because he hasn’t paid “at least” 10 percent in tithing to his church – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

. . .

Who cares about tax returns?

But those returns contain something, apparently, that Mitt Romney doesn’t want to explain or talk about.

And we may never know exactly what that is.

http://utahpolicy.com/bookmark/19867431-Is-Mitt-Romney-Hiding-Something-About-His-Tithing-

Bill Kristol: Mitt Romney's Low Tax Rate Is 'Kinda Weird'

Source: Huffington Post

Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol said Monday that he thinks Mitt Romney should pay a higher tax rate, calling the rate he pays on his investments "weird."

"I personally -- if I were designing the tax code -- would have a tax code in which Mitt Romney paid more than 13 percent, given what I know about the kind of investments he made money from," Kristol said Monday on C-Span.

The prominent conservative commentator added that he thought there would be no "economic detriment" to Romney if he paid more.

"I think it just seems kinda weird that he pays a lower rate than an awful lot of middle-class people," Kristol said.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/20/bill-kristol-mitt-romney-tax-rate_n_1810512.html



Broken clock . . .

It's weird like everything else about Romney.

Muncie Star Press (Indiana) - OUR VIEW: Romney must release tax returns to restore credibility

Romney insists there is nothing hidden in his taxes, that his finances are above-board and held in a blind trust managed by a trustee. But in a radio interview last month, he told the interviewer, “I don’t manage them. I don’t even know where they are. That trustee follows all U.S. laws. All the taxes are paid, as appropriate. All of them have been reported to the government. There’s nothing hidden there.”

He went on to suggest that Obama is making taxes an issue to deflect attention from a weak economy and jobs.

So at this point, we have to take Romney on his word, and that’s been known to change.

Romney just last week has said he’s paid at least 13 percent of his income in taxes for the past decade. Unfortunately for him, because he’s stalled on this issue for so long, the only way to restore his credibility is to actually release his returns.

Otherwise, this issue just won’t go away.

http://www.thestarpress.com/article/20120819/OPINION01/308190017

Salt Lake City Tribune: Why examine Romney’s taxes?

Why examine Romney’s taxes?
By maria magers roberts
First Published 7 hours ago • Updated 7 hours ago

. . .

• On his recent trip abroad, Romney skipped Italy, for good reasons. Bain Capital, with Romney as CEO, made about $1 billion in a leveraged (minimal cash outlay – low-risk) buyout of an Italian company. Bloomberg News reported that Bain funneled its profits through subsidiaries in Luxembourg, a common corporate way to avoid taxes in other European countries. The buyer, Italy’s biggest telephone company, now is valued way below what it paid Bain and other investors for the business. The shock waves of this transaction are still felt in Italy.

• In Romney’s self-directed individual retirement account, he used heavy leveraging and a "blocking company," thereby avoiding the "unrelated business income tax" normally imposed on such gains in IRAs. His IRA’s growth to $100 million is astounding in light of contribution limits of $30,000 annually. On its face, the IRA was likely funded in part with stock shares valued well below market.

• Presidential candidates generally avoid betting the U.S. dollar will lose value by speculating in Swiss francs. Yet such speculation was the stated purpose of Romney’s "blind" trust Swiss bank account, which was closed in early 2010. Was the income reported on earlier tax returns? Did Romney timely file disclosure forms to the Treasury Department?

. . .

• Romney’s apparent disdain for tax obligations is clear from his role in Marriott International’s abusive tax shelter activities. From 1993 to 1998, Romney was head of the audit committee of the Marriott board of directors, with responsibilities that included tax planning. The so-called "Son of Boss" tax shelter helped Marriott sell $81 million of mortgage notes, reporting a $71 million "tax loss." Romney was an insider with perspective on the motivation and lack of substance in the transaction, fully understanding the tax avoidance game. Romney reportedly was the board member most familiar with the transaction.

This shelter, used by Marriott and others, represented one of the largest tax-avoidance schemes in history, costing the U.S. billions in lost tax revenues. In 2008, the U.S. Federal Court of Claims ruled against Marriott, which appealed and lost again. The appeals court sided with the Department of Justice, calling Marriott’s transactions "fictitious," "artificial," "spectral," an "illusion" and a "scheme."

. . .

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/opinion/54703943-82/romney-tax-marriott-bain.html.csp
 

Tampa Bay Times: Nation still waiting for Romney tax returns

If Mitt Romney wants to put an end to speculation over his personal finances, he needs to release multiple years of tax returns. His assurance last week that he paid at least 13 percent of his income in federal income tax annually for the last decade won't do it, and he should not be so offended by the requests for more openness. Nothing more is being demanded of Romney than has been routinely asked of and received from most other recent candidates for president, and there is no reason to treat him differently just because of his wealth.

Romney's response to a reporter's question in South Carolina was an attempt to quell the unsubstantiated claim by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid earlier this month that Romney paid no taxes some years. But in fact, Romney's answer just reinforced that wealth sets him apart — he paid a lower percentage of his income in taxes than many other upper-income Americans — and he won't give voters a chance to verify his claim for themselves.

Republican presidential nominee John McCain was an outlier in releasing only two years of tax returns in 2008. Every major party presidential nominee in recent history has released multiple years of tax returns to enable voters to evaluate their financial interests and potential conflicts. That includes Romney's father, then-Michigan Gov. George Romney, who released 12 years of tax returns in his 1968 bid for the Republican presidential nomination.

Much has been made of why Mitt Romney isn't willing to do the same. Economists who have examined his tax returns for 2010 and a summary of 2011 say they raise more questions than answers. How, for example, did Romney come to have an individual retirement account worth $100 million? What was the purpose of offshore accounts? And some have even wondered if Romney is refusing to release returns because he may have taken advantage of an IRS amnesty program in 2009 that allowed Americans to return funds to domestic accounts with minimal penalty.

. . .

That's a curious position for a candidate who in recent weeks applied the same scrutiny he's shying away from. U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan turned over "several years" of tax returns to the Romney campaign for vetting before he was added to the ticket. And Romney turned over several years of tax returns to McCain in 2008 when McCain was vetting potential running mates. President Barack Obama has released every tax return since 2001.

Romney knew to expect this scrutiny, yet he still resists. His personal wealth does not entitle him to a different standard of openness.

http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/editorials/nation-still-waiting-for-romneys-tax-returns/1246436

Come on, Governor Romney, dozens of federal and state agencies can review your tax returns

Why can't the people you are asking to vote for you look at those returns?

Federal law covering disclosure of tax returns is located at 26 U.S.C. 6103. If you can't sleep tonight, you can read it here -

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/6103

The laundry list of exceptions to the privacy of tax returns is very long - almost every state tax and law enforcement agency can access them. The Chairmen of the Senate Finance, Joint Taxation and House Ways and Means Committees can review them in closed session. Plus there are many other exceptions to tax return confidentiality.

You won't release them to the American people even though you want them to vote for you? Why not?

In Forbes: 13% of What Mr. Romney?

By Peter J Reilly, Contributor

Mitt Romney has kicked my BS detector into high gear. I’ve notice that when people either want to dramatize raw numbers or avoid talking about them, they shift to percentages. Like the time my boss told me that I got a higher percentage raise than he did. Romney has been accused of paying no income taxes for an unspecified ten year period. He responds by indicating that he looked back at his returns and notes that he paid at least 13% and last year he paid 13.6%. Now instead of going to that extra step of computing a fraction, why didn’t he just tell us what the numerators and the denominators were. We have a copy of his 2010 return and a draft copy of his extended 2011 return.

The 2010 return has total federal income tax net of credits on Line 55 of $2,976,345 which is 13.7% of his adjusted gross income of $21,646,507 on Line 38. Since he was a little vague about the 13.6% – “I think the most recent year is 13.6 or something like that. So I paid taxes every single year.”, those are likely the numbers he is referring to. Since his gross income includes nearly $16,000,000 in capital gains and qualified dividends that is about what you would expect. On the draft 2011 return Line 55 is $3,213,051 while Line 38 is $20,901,075 which makes for 15.4%. The higher percentage is accounted for by there being less in the way of capital gains and qualified dividends.

You have to page a little further in the 2010 return to find another really interesting number, $4,844,089, Line 14 on Schedule D – Long Term Capital Loss Carryover. This means that Mr. Romney did not have capital gains in 2008. So if he had a tax liability for 2008 it was an even higher percentage of his adjusted gross income. Most likely though it was a much lower adjusted gross income and a much lower tax.

. . .

If Romney did participate in tax shelters that are now considered sketchy but were then blessed by prestigious national firms, I don’t think it says anything about him that we don’t already know. It just annoys me when people throw out percentages when the actual numbers are available.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterjreilly/2012/08/17/13-of-what-mr-romney/
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