Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol on Monday admitted that it was “kinda weird” that presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s tax rate was only around 13 percent when most middle-class people paid significantly more.
“The custom over the last 20-30 years, I suppose, has been to release at least a couple years of tax returns,” the neoconservative pundit told C-SPAN. “If you know you’re running for president anyway, I think it’s just part of the price of running. … Obama did so Romney probably should do it.”
“Look, it’s an interesting debate about what tax rates people should pay, how progressive the tax code should be,” he continued. “I personally, if I were designing the tax code, would have a tax code in which Mitt Romney paid more than 13 percent, I would say, given what I know about the kind of investments he made money from.”
“I’m just not a believer that he needed — that there would have been any economic determent to paying more, and I think it just seems kinda weird that he pays a lower rate than an awful lot of middle-class people.”
Kristol has previously called Romney “crazy” for not making more tax returns available.
“He should release the tax returns tomorrow,” Kristol told Fox News’ Brit Hume in July. “It’s crazy. You’ve got to release six, eight, ten years back tax returns. … He has to give a big speech in defense of capitalism, and that will elevate, I think, this race above this tactical back in forth, which I do think he’s on the margin of losing.”
Romney insisted to reporters last week that he had paid more than 13 percent of his income in taxes — or more if donations to the Mormon church were included — over the last 10 years, and accused the people who want to see his returns of being “small minded.”
During an interview with NBC, Ann Romney said that there would be “no more tax releases given” by the wealthy couple, but she also insisted that “there’s nothing we’re hiding.”
“We have been very transparent to what’s legally required of us,” the candidate’s wife told NBC’s Natalie Morales. “But the more we release, the more we get attacked, the more we get questioned, the more we get pushed. And so, we have done what’s legally required. And there’s going to be no more tax releases given.”
“There’s nothing we’re hiding,” Ann Romney said. “You know, we’ve had a blind trust for how many years? We don’t even know what’s in there. It’s been managed by blind trust since before Mitt was governor, you know, 2002 forward. And so, you know, I’ll be curious to see what’s in there too.”
Over the course of the summer, President Barack Obama’s campaign has successfully attacked Mitt Romney by connecting him to American jobs that Bain Capital allegedly helped send overseas. It has also hammered him for not releasing more than two years of tax returns and having offshore investments and tax shelters in the Cayman Islands, Bermuda and Switzerland.
A report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service last year found that 10.4 million moderate-income taxpayers paid more than 26.5 percent on their income in taxes.
Watch this video from C-SPAN, broadcast Aug. 20, 2012.
(h/t: The Huffington Post)
Here are 7 wild, bizarre and pathetic moments from Trump’s ‘campaign launch’
On Tuesday night, President Donald Trump held a rally that was billed as the official launch his re-election campaign — though he has never really stopped holding campaign rallies.
As expected, the president ranted, lied, and engaged in the raucous attacks that are central to his connection with Republican voters. Some of it was actually just sad, such as his continued obsession with Hillary Clinton.
Here are seven of the wildest, disturbing and pathetic moments from the rally:
1. He said Democrats "want to destroy our country as we know it."
Trump casually accuses Democrats of "want[ing] to destroy you and they want to destroy our country as we know it." pic.twitter.com/4K79KlbEeR
British PM candidates clash over Brexit as Boris Johnson skips debate
Candidates to become Britain's next prime minister clashed over Brexit strategy at their first debate on Sunday but the frontrunner, Boris Johnson, dodged the confrontation.
The 90-minute debate on Channel 4 featured the five remaining candidates and an empty podium for Johnson, the gaffe-prone former foreign secretary and former mayor of London.
In sometimes ill-tempered exchanges, four of the five candidates said they would seek to renegotiate the draft Brexit divorce deal agreed with Brussels even though EU leaders have repeatedly ruled this out.
Michael Cohen ordered back to Congress on March 6
President Donald Trump's so-called "fixer" is being asked to return to Congress for more questioning on March 6.
Outside of the closed-door committee hearing Thursday, Cohen said that the House Intelligence Committee is seeking further information, according to Washington Examiner writer Byron York.
Michael Cohen finished closed-door testimony before House Intel Committee, says he's coming back for another session March 6. Again: No reason for secrecy. Transcripts should be released ASAP.
— Byron York (@ByronYork) February 28, 2019