Mitt Romney is not doing much to help his campaign this week, as he followed up his lambast of 47%’ers by repeating how much lower his tax rate is than the average American’s. Romney finally released a mere second year of income tax information to the public on Friday, showing that the Romneys paid just over $1.9 million in taxes on about $13.7 million in income, resulting in a tax rate of 14.1% (a hair higher than the 13.9% he paid the previous year).
What’s even more perplexing is the fact that his campaign came right out and said that Romney’s 2011 effective tax rate would have been “significantly reduced,” had he not voluntarily claimed a lesser deduction on the return. Conceivably, Romney could file an amended return after the election, or years from now, to revise the deduction amount and receive a refund.
Purposely paying a bit more in taxes during campaign season only sounds a bit like what GOP vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan did earlier this year, when he rushed to update his financial disclosures to include his biggest asset: the trust in his wife’s name, worth up to $1 million last year.
The majority of Romney’s earnings came from capital gains, a perk only beholden to the rich. In comparison, President Obama and his wife, Michelle, paid a little over $162,000 in federal taxes last year on adjusted gross income of $789,674, for a rate of 20.5%.
Still, there is something Romney does not want America to know. Instead of releasing any additional years of tax returns, Romney instead plans to present a notarized letter from Pricewaterhouse Coopers, showing that Mitt and Ann Romney owed income taxes every year from 1990-2009. They claim they paid an “average annual effective federal tax rate of 20.2%” during that time, but the lowest year is a familiar-sounding 13.66%. Romney is worth an estimated $190 million to $250 million, according to his most recent financial disclosure report.
Romney had promised the full tax documents would be posted to his website by 3:00pm ET, but as of our publication time they had not yet been posted. There is a letter from a former IRS commissioner saying that he has reviewed Romney’s record s and doesn’t see any evidence of illegal activities.
Do you think 14.1% is a tax rate to be proud of? Comment below.