Romney digs in: I will not be releasing more tax returns

posted at 4:41 pm on July 17, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

There’s a growing chorus insisting that Mitt Romney needs to release his tax returns, because otherwise, he’s the most secretive candidate since “Richard Nixon,” or something — but it isn’t just Democrats clamoring for him to do so, either. There’s a cadre of conservatives urging him to just bite the bullet and get it over with, too:

“He ought to release his returns,” former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, another prominent Republican, told conservative National Review Online. “Any time this campaign’s conversation is not about President Obama’s failed policies…then the [Romney] campaign isn’t talking about the right thing.”

Last week Texas Rep. Pete Sessions, head of the National Republican Congressional Committee, said Mr. Romney’s personal finances were “fair game.”

And:

Strategic “advice” has been offered up on The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page, and in a series of high-profile tweets from NewsCorp CEO Rupert Murdoch. …

On “Fox News Sunday” this week, Weekly Standard Editor Bill Kristol called Romney’s refusal to release more than two years of tax returns “crazy.”

“He should release the tax returns tomorrow,” Mr. Kristol said. “You’ve got to release six, eight, 10 years of back tax returns.”

Over on ABC’s “This Week,” conservative columnist George Will chimed in by observing that Romney was “losing at this point in a big way.” Mr. Will added: “I do not know why, given that Mitt Romney knew the day that McCain lost in 2008 that he was going to run for president again that he didn’t get all of this out and tidy up some of his offshore accounts and all the rest.”

It seems that Mitt Romney, however, is not to be persuaded. On Tuesday, he reiterated to the NJ that he is set on this point and will not be releasing any more of his personal tax returns:

“In the political environment that exists today, the opposition research of the Obama campaign is looking for anything they can use to distract from the failure of the president to reignite our economy,” Romney said in an interview with National Review Online. “And I’m simply not enthusiastic about giving them hundreds or thousands of more pages to pick through, distort, and lie about.” …

Asked by the interviewer why he didn’t get rid of the off-shore tax accounts that have also become the subject of Obama campaign ads, Romney declined to offer a detailed explanation. He said only, “The world of finance is not as simple as some would have you believe.”

Allright, I’m gonna’ just ponder this out: I’m all about shutting down the Obama campaign’s bullying tactics and refusing to play the game on their terms; but then again, when it comes to the cheap populist appeals, Team Barack Obama has been known to play a damn good game.

Mitt Romney is a pretty judicious, pros-and-cons type of dude — while I highly doubt he did anything at all approaching illegality, he must think that his tax returns would provide Team Obama with more fodder for the anti-free enterprise, populist attacks. As legal and prudent as they can be, the general public probably wouldn’t be too receptive to “unpatriotic” offshore bank accounts or whatever else right now — the world of finance is a complex and tricky thing, and maybe it’s just not a good use of Mitt Romney’s time to be trying to explain hedge funds and whatnot when we need to be talking about broad economic solutions for our national economy.

Is it more worthwhile to let Team Obama keep harping on the “Romney is super-secretive meme,” which will eventually get put on the back-burner and with which they’ve already jumped the shark at least once, or to just let it all hang out and clear the air now while we still have months left to tinker with messaging? Even if Romney’s tax returns contain nothing at all untoward, I doubt they’d be able to tell Team Obama to stick that in their pipe and smoke it — Team Obama would find some way to hype their proffered image of Romney as a dastardly capitalist.

I honestly don’t know — Guy Benson and Conn Carroll offer two thorough, dissenting opinions if you’re looking for a little more analysis. So, what do you think? Should Mitt keep telling Team Obama to get lost, or just have out and be done with it?

So go the latest campaign shenanigans. Meanwhile, back at the ranch


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 4 5 6

Use the Reagan rule on tax returns. One year is enough. Go pound sand if you want more.

crazywater on July 18, 2012 at 9:40 AM

Cut back “Government” – cut back spending – cut taxes.

maverick muse on July 18, 2012 at 9:33 AM

I won’t let you know which candidate for POTUS is running on those issues. You will be far happier when you discover him for yourself.

DannoJyd on July 18, 2012 at 9:46 AM

Can’t remember ever taking a 1040 to a job interview but I have taken transcripts. Just sayin..

Wagthatdog on July 18, 2012 at 9:50 AM

Mitt is hiding something… and it’s hard to see how this issue will just disappear as long as conservative journalists and analysts continue to press him to follow established precedent.

bayam on July 17, 2012 at 9:13 PM

so not releasing something that isn’t required means you’re hiding something?

Fast and Furious documents must show Obama shot Brian Terry himself if we’re just guessing here.

Wagthatdog on July 18, 2012 at 9:52 AM

Use the Reagan rule on tax returns. One year is enough. Go pound sand if you want more.

crazywater on July 18, 2012 at 9:40 AM

EXZACKARY!

44Magnum on July 18, 2012 at 11:41 AM

Has a whistle blower at the IRS told Romney that his tax returns have already been compromised by team Obama? If so is not releasing them going to trip up team Obama into committing a felony by using the confidential information.

meci on July 18, 2012 at 12:35 PM

Romney should say, “Fine, you want another year of my tax returns? Let’s make a deal. I’ll release them as soon as you release your college transcripts.”

Decoski on July 18, 2012 at 12:51 PM

Romney should say, “Fine, you want another year of my tax returns? Let’s make a deal. I’ll release them as soon as you release your college transcripts.”

Decoski on July 18, 2012 at 12:51 PM

LOL. GMTA

I didn’t read the thread before posting my comment. There may be other great minds as well.

farsighted on July 18, 2012 at 12:57 PM

LOL. GMTA

I didn’t read the thread before posting my comment. There may be other great minds as well.

farsighted on July 18, 2012 at 12:57 PM

There are a lot of us who agree with you two on this.

Romney should reciprocate every request 0bamessiah makes for more info with the exact same language 0bamessiah uses. :)

Bizarro No. 1 on July 18, 2012 at 1:13 PM

The “release college transcripts angle” will be met with reasonable looking faked up documents to buy time until after the election. Go Phosphorous now. Take no prisoners. Explain how we the American people have suffered for 3 long years not knowing who pushed this puppet monster on us. Follow the money. Find trends in small $ contributions. Dig into Soros’s pay pal army. Get James OKeefe on the job. Unfortunately he’s hiding, scared these red bastards will murder him. Who empowered the US reds to the point they might beat patriots in a showdown? Who did this to us? Same people that took down a proud blossoming superpower in South Africa? Bankers have us by the balls. OWS was right about that.

pc on July 18, 2012 at 11:04 PM

Comment pages: 1 4 5 6