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View Diary: Here's why Romney will NEVER release his tax forms, and why we need to keep hounding him (186 comments)

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  •  2009 would reveal amnesty (30+ / 0-)

    IRS had a one- time amnesty for people to declare off-shore accounts, pay up, and get clean. The 2009 return would show these, so would reveal the extent and size of Romney's tax dodging through foreign accounts.

    Or at least that's my bes guess as to why we won't see the 2009 return.

    •  just a question.... (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Black Max, TX Unmuzzled, salmo, ER Doc, LSophia

      If there was a tax amnesty in 2009, and previous tax dodgers had the opportunity to 'come clean', pay up and be square with the IRS, then, should Rmoney release his 2009 returns, we'd all see that he was (perhaps) one of the tax dodgers and hadn't paid his share of taxes for years.  But, also, it would be for any taxes the tax dodger chose to release, there could be millions more in many other hidden tax havens which would remain tax free.
      Is my understanding of the tax amnesty correct?
      (I really am asking, not a snark, since I don't know, and am unfamiliar with tax amnesty)

      I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

      by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 09:09:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I dunno (5+ / 0-)

        I am not a tax expert, just have been reading about the tax amnesty law passed in 2008, and it is the only thing I can find that explains why Romney won't release 2009, and so can't release earlier years.

        Whethe Mitt kept anything in hidden places almost doesn't matter, that would not show up on the tax return.

        Th amnesty info would be there, and would kill his chances. So I think that's the reason he will take any hit for not releasing 2009, since any hit will be  less than if he did release them.

        As I said, it's my best guess, I have no special info.

        •  Urban Owl - "the only thing I can find" (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, ER Doc

          I can think of a long list of reasons why Romney would not choose to release his returns for 2009 and prior.

          "let's talk about that"

          by VClib on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 05:38:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, but McCain (0+ / 0-)

            Romney was willing to risk having McCain's staff review his returns in summer 2008, so what makes 2009 special?

            Seems to me that the earlier returns were probably " normal" taking advantage of tax law, which would not be a big issue. But if Romney took advantage of the amnesty, the 2009 return would reveal a sordid mess that NEEDED amnesty.

            The 2009 return has something that is worse than the cost of not releasing, just rich-kid tax avoidance wouldn't be that bad.

            •  Urban Owl - you have a big leap of logic (0+ / 0-)

              The fact that a team from the McCain campaign was allowed to go to the PWC offices in Boston and in a highly confidential setting, with tough nondisclosure agreements in place, review the Romney's returns through 2007 does not mean that the only issues are in the 2008 or 2009 returns. One assumption you are making is that Romney agreed, that if he was picked he would disclose anything more than what is required by law. Maybe that was one of the issues McCain had with Romney. I think Romney knew that McCain would never pick him but going through the vetting process would help him in 2012.

              My own personal view is shaped by my knowledge of PWC's tax department. They don't have clients that keep offshore accounts secret. It creates too much jeporody

              "let's talk about that"

              by VClib on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 09:32:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you.... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, ER Doc, Zack from the SFV

          Romney's arrogance that none of this would be questioned when he's running for the highest elected official in this country boggles the mind.

          I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

          by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 06:43:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Switzerland turned over some bank account (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ER Doc, LSophia, Lilyvt

        information due to pressure.  Some banks compelled non resident Americans to close their accounts.

        But I don't know about other countries.

        www.tapestryofbronze.com

        by chloris creator on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 01:19:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you.... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, ER Doc

          It's an amazement he thought he could keep whatever this stuff is 'under wraps' when running for president.

          I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

          by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 06:41:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I think the problem is the Swiss account. (5+ / 0-)

           The big thing about Switzerland was that those were secret accounts that were illegal for Americans to hold. When the global financial reforms were established to fight terrorism, the biggest Swiss banks were forced to release the names of Americans with illegal accounts. The IRS set up the amnesty to allow the account holders to admit their fault & pay the taxes and late-payment penalties; that way they avoided possible prosecution. If Romney took the amnesty, the 2009 return will show that he didn't just use all legal means to minimize his taxes, but that he is an admitted tax cheat, who knowingly violated the law.

        -7.25, -6.26

        We are men of action; lies do not become us.

        by ER Doc on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 03:04:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you.... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, ER Doc

          I just don't understand how he thought he could keep it secret in this day and age of almost instant info.
          A refusal to release certain documents and being very slyly coy and secretive about it, is like an open admission of some wrongdoing, even if there's an innocent reason for it.

          I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

          by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 06:39:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Lily - under a tax amnesty (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Lilyvt, LSophia, ER Doc, Zack from the SFV

        you have to pay all your back taxes, interest and penalties. What you escape is criminal prosecution. The amnesty program is a civil process, not criminal. Typically someone with unreported foreign accounts would face criminal prosecution.

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 05:36:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you.... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LSophia, ER Doc

          Just wasn't sure how an amnesty could affect any reportage.
          The real question is, if, indeed, he did take advantage of the amnesty, why in the world did he think he could keep it secret when he ran for president, since tax returns are something that's 'par for the course' since Romney's father.

          I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

          by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 06:36:24 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Lily - I think the notion that Romney took (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ER Doc

            part in a 2009 amnesty is nonsense. Romney's taxes have been handled by PriceWaterhouseCoopers since well before 2009. They would never allow a client to have unreported foreign accounts. This isn't like Romney has some distant cousin do his taxes. According to the Boston Globe as many as 50 CPAs and tax lawyers assist in preparing Romney's return. That's not the profile of someone with unreported foreign accountants.

            "let's talk about that"

            by VClib on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 07:20:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  OK, (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ER Doc, VClib, Zack from the SFV

              Then if everything's legit, why won't he release more years?

              I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

              by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 07:55:11 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Lily - here is my guess (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ER Doc

                The Romney returns are long and complex and show very sophisticated use of the current IRS code to minimize his taxes. That's clearly not a plus from a political perspective. He is going to release two years, 2010 & 2011 and it shows that he makes millions, even though he doesn't work, and pays taxes in the 13-14% range. The only full return that has been released is 2010 and armies of Dem tax lawyers and accountants have reviewed it and questioned how PWC has treated some of the items in the return. I think Romney believes that if he releases ten years of returns it will give the Dem opposition research teams hundreds of pages to find little issues to discuss and he could die the death of a thousand cuts.

                I think he now has his answer on this question. The federal government has a disclosure requirement for candidates for POTUS and he states that he has exceeded that standard. And I believe him that he is not releasing additional years of returns.

                "let's talk about that"

                by VClib on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 08:21:21 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  thanks for explaining.... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  VClib

                  But, it seems he's going to 'die a death of a thousand blows' anyway, precisely because he won't release them.
                  Sorta like having an ogre under the bed when you're a kid, 'scary pull up the sheets 'cause you haven't looked' fright, which goes away if you look.  What you imagine is oft times far worse than what is actual.
                  But in this case, it seems that it's bad not to release (for us-all sorts of illegalities are imagined/for him-mistrust of the electorate) and bad to release (for him-CPAs going over them with a fine tooth comb).  A lose lose situation for him.

                  I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

                  by Lilyvt on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 08:43:39 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  So PriceWaterhouseCooper would have refused to do (0+ / 0-)

              the taxes of a multimillionaire financier with an illegal undeclared account? There were so many Americans with illegal Swiss accounts that they extended the amnesty into 2011. I have to think that some of them were using major firms for their taxes. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think Romney takes orders from his attorneys. He's an attorney himself, and experienced in arcane "high finance." Unless the principal responsible for Romney's account had a policy of refusing to handle accounts with illegal elements, they did the taxes the way Romney told them to do them.

              -7.25, -6.26

              We are men of action; lies do not become us.

              by ER Doc on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 08:28:03 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Bingo. This is a huge factor IMHO. n/t (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Black Max, LSophia

      That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

      by concernedamerican on Sat Jul 28, 2012 at 09:52:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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