Archive for Friday, September 21, 2012

Romneys paid $1.94 million in fed taxes for 2011

September 21, 2012


— Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, paid $1.94 million in federal taxes on last year's income of $13.7 million, for an effective tax rate of 14.1 percent, his campaign said Friday.

That's slightly above the 13.9 percent rate the couple paid in 2010. Most of the 2011 income was from investments.

Campaign officials said the couple filed the return Friday with the Internal Revenue Service, after receiving an extension. They were to publicly release their full 2011 returns late Friday.

Romney's taxes have emerged as a key issue during the 2012 presidential race with President Barack Obama. Romney released his 2010 tax returns and a 2011 estimate in January, but he has declined to disclose his returns from earlier years.

His vast fortune and his long association with Bain Capital, the private equity firm he cofounded, have been much discussed this year.

His campaign earlier estimated that Romney would pay about $3.2 million in taxes for the year, an estimate well above the $1.9 million actually paid. He paid about $3 million in federal income taxes in 2010 — an effective rate of 13.9 percent.

Critics, including Obama, have urged Romney to release more than just the two years of returns and follow his father's model. When George Romney ran for president, he released 12 years of tax returns.

Mitt Romney's campaign did put out a summary Friday by Brad Malt, the trustee of the couple's blind trust, saying that over the 20-year 1990-2009 period, the Romneys owed both state and federal income taxes and paid federal taxes at an effective annual rate of 20.2 percent

Obama's own tax return for last year showed that he and his wife, Michelle, paid $162,074 in federal taxes on $789,674 in adjusted gross income, an effective tax rate of 20.5 percent. Their income plunged from $1.7 million in 2010, with declining sales of the president's books. In 2009, the Obamas reported income of $5.5 million, fueled by the best-selling books.

The Romneys' exact totals for 2011 were federal taxes of $1,935,708 and on income of $13,696.951.

Most of Romney's income is from investments held in a blind trust, and campaign aides have stressed that he makes no decisions on how his money is invested.

During the 20-year period, the Romneys paid an effective federal income tax rate of between 13.45 percent and 13.66 percent each year, trustee Malt wrote.

For last year, the Romneys claimed a deduction for $2.25 million of their $4.021 million in charitable contributions, Malt said. In the previous year, a large percentage of those contributions went to the Mormon Church.

They could have claimed a higher charitable deduction, Malt said, but the couple "limited their deductions of charitable contributions to conform to the governor's statement (n August, based on the January estimate of income, that he paid at least 13 percent in income taxes in each of the last 10 years."

Romney told reporters in August that he's never paid less than 13 percent of his income in taxes during the past decade. He said that Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's claim to have heard that he paid no taxes in some years was "totally false."

The former Massachusetts governor, who would be among the richest presidents ever elected, is aggressively competing with Obama for the support of middle class voters. Romney has estimated wealth of as much as $250 million.

His tax rate of 14.1 percent is below that of many Americans because most of it flows from capital gains, which are taxed at 15 percent whereas the top marginal income tax rate now is 35 percent.

On average, middle-income families, those making from $50,000 to $75,000 a year, pay 12.8 percent of their income in federal taxes, according to Congress' Joint Committee on Taxation.

Several tax law experts said Friday that Romney's newly released tax returns would not be much help in uncovering the most persistent mysteries of the candidate's sprawling finances — whether he used aggressive tax-deferral strategies, what are the specifics and tax advantages of his numerous offshore investments, what is the source of his massive retirement account and what are the details behind his now-closed $3 million Swiss bank account.

The analysts said those details could emerge only if Romney provided far more of his tax returns — including files dating back to his years at Bain Capital, the private firm he left in 2001. Romney, who initially refused to disclose any tax returns, has drawn the line at providing only his 2010 and 2011 returns.

"The issue has never been Romney's 2011 tax return — in fact, it is a distraction to the real issues," said Edward D. Kleinbard, a law professor at the University of Southern California and former chief of staff of Congress' Joint Committee on Taxation. "All the important compliance and policy questions relating to Romney's personal tax matters relate to the past."

Only multiple returns would provide details about Romney's $100 million retirement account and how it grew, Kleinbard said. He also earlier returns would be crucial in knowing how often he paid gift tax on family trusts.

Joseph Bankman, a Stanford University law school professor and expert on tax law, said Friday, "It's the Bain years we'd really need to know to have a full assessment of his tax strategies." Bankman said that the 2010 and 2011 returns "only raised these questions, but they can't provide real answers."


Gotland 1 year, 6 months ago

2 million a year in federal I bet another 2 million in state, local and sales tax. But when is he going to pay his"fair" share? Paying 4 million and using almost no government services, and leftes somehow think this arrangement is not fair to the government.


Roland Gunslinger 1 year, 6 months ago

Everyone is aware that Mitt can file an amended tax return AFTER the election and get those taxes he overpaid on back, correct?


yourworstnightmare 1 year, 6 months ago

Matthew 6:21: For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.


Paul R Getto 1 year, 6 months ago

Greed and envy are sins. Money is fun and I doubt I'd whine if the my tax lug were large. Be having lots of fun on the rest of it. So what? Romney has money?


Fred Whitehead Jr. 1 year, 6 months ago

Why does it matter how much tax he paid or even how much tax he evaded?

His statements along with other republicans like Akin in Missouri give us a clear indication of his c haracter and agenda. He despises a good part of the population, and his disdain for many of us has been clearly stated. Akin has similar inclinations that are so typical of the republican party. Any one who does not see this (or chooses to ignore what they see) is deluding himself or herself.

But I think Romney is toast, it seems that a significant portion of the electorate is turning against him. Kansas will follow in lockstep to the Limbaugh/Romney/Akin/Ryan pablum and blh, blah, blah that they hear from the extreme right wing tea soaked "conservatives" imagining that this repressive and regressive approach will somehow make their lives better. It won't. It has been seen before and I think a significant number of people might just be waking up to the elephant in the room who wants to coddle the very rich and repress the rerest of us. (98% of the population)


Liberty275 1 year, 6 months ago

1.94 million. I wonder how it was redistributed.


Katara 1 year, 6 months ago

Meh. So what if he released 2011's taxes.

It doesn't change the fact that Romney is a big fat hypocrite for going after the 47% who pay no Federal Income Tax because they utilize all legal exemptions, deductions and credits to reduce their tax liability just as he does on his own taxes.


tomatogrower 1 year, 6 months ago

You conservatives can not make me feel sorry for the poor billionaires. I feel sorry for the workers in some of the companies in which Romney is invested that do not pay their workers enough for basic living expenses, much less, enough to buy their own home. I am sorry that you are so morally corrupt that you consider retired people and soldiers, who are included in that 47%, a burden on our society. Of course, you do support wars, which get rid of those dead beat soldiers, and make even more money for the billionaires. And you support those insurance companies who would love to cut off all those dead beat retired, old people, because they get sick too much. That would eliminate those 2 problems. Also, letting poor people starve would eliminate the other problem, but you'll want to keep some around. After all, you wouldn't want to have to clean your own toilets.


Armstrong 1 year, 6 months ago

That's what Armstrong gets for posting before coffee


headdoctor 1 year, 6 months ago

First and foremost Armstrong. Yes the 47% know what a tax form is for and what it looks like because in order for them to be included in the 47% in studies put out by the Government and the various nonprofit groups they had to file a return with the IRS.

Number 2. Romney could have avoided a lot of this garbage if he would have followed along with what the other candidates and presidents of the last forty years have done.

Number 3. The tax system is rigged with various tax laws and loop holes eroding the tax bases. It is skewed in favor of the upper income filers. It is hardly fair when a single person making $18,000 per year gets busted 15% of their income after exemptions and deductions but a millionaire can utilize higher deductions, write offs and loopholes then end up paying a lower percentage.


Armstrong 1 year, 6 months ago

What a great way to start Saturday. This thread has it all. Conspiracy nuts " the tax system is rigged". The jealous lot " how dare he (Mittt) make such an obscene profit on the backs of the working class (even though it primarily came for investments ). The money managers " He still didn't pay enough". The greatest thing about this thread is now the 47%ers know what a tax form is for.


Richard Heckler 1 year, 6 months ago

Some of the workers have been employed at this site for 33 years.

"Welcome to Bainport, a taste of the Romney economy." That’s the message on one of the banners that greets you at the tent city where we broadcast from in Freeport, Illinois.

"Bainport" is an encampment set up by workers who face losing their livelihoods when their workplace closes its doors in November and moves to China, taking 170 jobs with it.

The workers’ plant, Sensata Technologies, is owned by Bain Capital, the firm co-founded by Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. Democracy Now! first spoke to the Sensata workers when we met them at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, where they unsuccessfully tried to meet with Romney.

Now, they have returned to Freeport and set up a protest camp in a bid to save their jobs. We speak to "Bainport" workers Dot Turner and Cheryl Randecker.


tange 1 year, 6 months ago

No matter how you slice it, having now openly expressed contempt for half of Americans, perpetuating bigoted falsehoods in the process, I'm guessing Romney can't pay enough taxes or make enough charitable contributions to buy back his reputation.

/ and "bigoted as you think" KANSAS likely still will cast its votes red-handed


HomeSlice 1 year, 6 months ago

He breaks no laws, pays in full the large amount of tax due under the current tax code, and donates a significant amount of money (several million) to charity.

If those less fortunate don't feel the rich as paying their fair share, elect candidates that support your views and change the tax laws. Such as Obama, Pelosi, Reid, etc. Rally the base, get the Occupy movement better organized and hit the polls come November.

In the meantime, let the those just following current law alone.Convince enough of your neighbors to make the changes necessary. Obama has 47%, just a few more basis points and you have 4 more years to make your changes. Until then tidy up around here.


juma 1 year, 6 months ago

It is the Mormon church (sic) that he is afraid of knowing his real income. He cheated on the tithing and this is very very serious. Romney is a big guy in the church and if it becomes known that he cheated the church then all hell comes. Reed (also a Mormon) knows this and that is why he is pushing for the info. It is the best way to stop the Mitt.


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 6 months ago

Romney became a millionaire through private business. Obama and Harry Reid have become millionaires while being politicians.... Hummm


Jim Phillips 1 year, 6 months ago

How dare Mitt pay slightly more taxes than the law says he has to! He should be more like Tim Geitner or any of the other three dozen Obama administration personnel and lie /cheat on their tax returns.

At least he paid his taxes in accordance to the tax code. Big crime here! Notify the LJW! And no, I am not a fan of Romney, but I'll take him over the Narcissist in Chief any day.


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 6 months ago

Free society is rigged? Quit being a "have not"

If the system is rigged then why has this glorious president allowed this?


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 6 months ago

Well Beatrice, I assume you take your w2's to your accountant or do them yourself and If you are eligible for a deduction you take it???

Is that "working the system"????? If Romney has never been convicted or even much less charged with tax evasion I assume he's doing everything legally??? So, if he's doing this legally and paying his legal share under the current presidents system then I assume you are ok with it? We are living under the obama administrations current tax policies and we are all paying what's expected of us so why don't you quit your crying.


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 6 months ago

You libs are jealous because you won't earn the money Romney paid in taxes last year in a lifetime.


meggers 1 year, 6 months ago

He can always file an amended return and claim all of his charitable deductions after he loses in November.

And sorry, but the Mormon church provides little real charity. They invest in land and real estate. The few people they do help have to make their case and have it approved by the church's hierarchy. Usually, they are asked to perform church services in exchange for receiving help.


tbaker 1 year, 6 months ago

How many people posting here make a point of telling as many people as they can including complete strangers how much money they make? Anyone comfortable with that idea?

I understand why it's important Presidential condidates release tax returns, but the same principal applies: It is no one's business how much money somebody else makes. I'm glad he is successful. Good for him.

$1.94 million huh? So the Romney's funded the federal government for about 55 seconds.

I don't think he caved to pressure, I think he wanted to show the liberal base what an income tax return looks like.



biggunz 1 year, 6 months ago

Wow. How old are you people? It's good to know he cave's under pressure? Still not enough? What's he hiding?


beatrice 1 year, 6 months ago

He paid 14% in a year when he absolutely knew he was going to be running and had a very good chance of needing to show his return.

He needs to show at least the previous 5 years, although it should be more.

I guarantee you one thing -- Mitt Romney sure is doing better now than he was four years ago.


Constitutional_Malfeasance 1 year, 6 months ago

I would be glad to have a successful businessman like Romney in the white house. His past is well documented. Can Obama say this?


geekin_topekan 1 year, 6 months ago

So, he caves under pressure? Good to know.


commonsenseanyone 1 year, 6 months ago

Was there a doubt he paid taxes people? Where are the loonies who were accusing him of paying nothing? Ok here it is.....wait for it..... Now where's Obama's transcripts.


irvan moore 1 year, 6 months ago

in fairness to mitt he did pay more than i did


tange 1 year, 6 months ago

One man (or "one flesh"), one year: $13.7 million. And many of the children of the 47% "...who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims...." go to bed hungry. Ah, America...

/ what are days for?
... to wake us up


KansasLiberal 1 year, 6 months ago

What is Mittens hiding? Why won't he release his tax returns? Is he a tax cheat? Or has he been cheating the Mormon church? Why won't he release his tax returns? If he didn't do anything wrong he has nothing to worry about.


chootspa 1 year, 6 months ago

You know it's a bad day when Romney is trying to get us to talk more about his taxes. Oops.


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