- Reuters has an excellent article on why it's all nice a good that Romney released one cherry picked year of tax returns, but to really understand his financial picture, we'd really need to see the returns from the years he was at Bain Capital. Because otherwise as David Shuster points out, "First, your 2010 return indicates you paid a rate of 13.9 percent. Furthermore, it suggests you paid far lower than that in 2009. You see, the 2010 return reveals you carried over $4.9 million dollars in losses from the previous year. That means you paid no taxes on capital gains in 2009, including no taxes on your carried interest. So how much did you pay in 2009? Zero?"
- Of course then again, Romney thinks that if you add the 13.9% he paid in taxes last year to the 15% he gave away to charity, multiplied by being double taxed at the corporate level (hint: when you're paid in stock options like Romney was, you avoid getting taxed on it the first time around, which is exactly why companies pay executives in stock options) it all somehow adds up to his real tax rate being 50%.
- Ethical lapses aside, the best part of Romney's tax returns have been them driving Newt Gingrich full on socialist: "You have to live in a world of Swiss bank accounts and Cayman Island accounts and making $20 million for no work, to have some fantasy this far from reality." Look, Democrats aren't saying that Mitt Romney and people like him didn't work to earn their capital gains income, but we are saying that if when people forgo salary to get paid in stock options, they should be taxed on that income the same as if they'd received a salary. Income is income, and the rich shouldn't be given their own special rate because they try to obscure that fact.
- If you're worried that you might lose your home to foreclosure, Romney wants you to know that "banks are as scared as you are." Of course he also doesn't deny that he's personally profited from homes being foreclosed on. He may claim that his funds were in a blind trust, but it's not very blind when he knew exactly what was in it in 2008, including the investments in question. Of course even if it was blind, there's one prominent politician who doesn't think that's an excuse: Mitt Romney who attacked Ted Kennedy in their 1994 Senate campaign for the "ruse" that was his blind trust.
- Now the fact that under Romney's leadership Bain Capital made $342 million bankrupting a Florida company and firing it's 850 employees may not hurt him in tomorrow's primary (why I have no idea), but come the Fall Florida is going to be a must win state for him, and I don't think a general election audience is going to look at it as favorably. They're also probably not going to be thrilled to find out he was on the board of another Florida company that was forced to pay $119 million for criminal and civil Medicare fraud fines while he was running things.
- Now I don't care if you're a Democrat or a Republican, the state of our healthcare system is disgusting. If you're a Democrat it's because we have people literally dying in the street of easily preventable and curable diseases. If you're a Republican it's because the Kenyan Muslim Usurper has instituted death panels to kill your grandmother. But regardless if you're in touch with reality or not, it's worth getting worked up over. Unless you're Mitt Romney or anyone else in the top 1% who are rich enough never to have to worry about being able to afford the best medical care that money can buy, then "it's not worth getting angry about."
- But hey, there's at least one man out there willing to defend Mitt Romney, the country's most unpopular Governor, Florida's Rick Scott who compared Romney to a Holocaust victim. I'm starting to understand why he's so unpopular.
Welcome to the working week!