Independent tax experts reported that Mitt Romney's $5 trillion plan to cut taxes for the wealthy would mean a $2,000 tax hike for the average middle-class family.
So what does it all mean for you and your family? Check out this simple online tax calculator—enter your income and see the difference for middle-class Americans.
Middle-class Americans are beginning to learn what Mitt Romney's tax plan would mean for them. The Wall Street Journal reports:
A new study released Wednesday suggests that Mitt Romney’s tax plan would benefit the rich and hurt the poor and middle class, no matter how current blanks in the plan are filled in.Read More…
Today we learned that the economy grew for the 12th straight quarter, exports and business investment continue to grow, and the auto industry is growing stronger. But President Obama knows that we need more decisive action to create jobs and help the economy grow faster.
Last September, President Obama put forward a detailed legislative plan—the American Jobs Act—to do just that. The jobs plan would keep teachers, firefighters, and police officers on the job, put construction workers back to work, and cut taxes for small businesses that hire and invest and businesses that bring jobs home. But Republicans in Congress have blocked this plan. As a result there are now 1 million Americans who are unnecessarily out of work.
Governor Romney also opposes this jobs plan, saying it was like "throwing a cup of gasoline on embers." But independent economists disagree—and they say that Mitt Romney’s plan would slow our recovery and cost us jobs. Romney himself acknowledges that spending cuts will damage the recovery. As economist Jeff Liebman has written, based on Romney’s own statements, his plan would cost over 1 million jobs next year.
Romney’s plan for the economy—including tax cuts weighted towards the wealthy and rolling back Wall Street reform—would do nothing to create jobs today, and instead would return us to the failed policies that dug this ditch in the first place.
Questioning Mitt Romney’s claims that he left his corporate buyout firm in 1999 and wasn’t responsible for decisions made after that point, The Associated Press reports new information about his involvement over the next two years:
“Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has said he had no active role in Bain Capital, the private equity firm he founded, after he exited in February 1999 to take over Salt Lake City's Winter Olympics bid. But according to Bain associates and others familiar with Romney's actions at the time, he stayed in regular contact with his partners over the following months, tending to his partnership interests and negotiating his separation from the company.
Those familiar with Romney's discussions with his Bain partners said the contacts included several meetings in Boston, the company's home base, but were limited to matters that did not affect the firm's investments or other management decisions. Yet Romney continued to oversee his partnership stakes even as he disengaged from the firm, personally signing or approving a series of corporate and legal documents through the spring of 2001, according to financial reports reviewed by The Associated Press.
The details of Romney's contacts with his Bain partners between his 1999 departure and his separation from the company in mid-2001 could show how involved he was—either as CEO or passive investor—in several multimillion-dollar investment deals, bankruptcies, and a spate of layoffs and overseas job shifts at Bain-owned companies that reportedly occurred during that span.”
Review the facts about Romney’s involvement yourself—check out the full AP article.
Mitt Romney can't seem to find a coherent explanation for how a chairman, CEO, and sole shareholder of a buyout firm is not responsible for decisions at that firm. Watch Americans struggle to understand Romney's answer as they read it word-for-word, and then share this video with your friends.
A new economic analysis of Mitt Romney's jobs plan found that his proposal to eliminate all U.S. taxes on foreign profits made by U.S. companies could lead to the creation of 800,000 jobs—overseas. Take a look at how many jobs U.S. companies could create for foreign economies with Romney's help, and then share the facts with your friends.
Click here for more information on how Romney's plan would encourage companies to send jobs overseas, and how President Obama is working to bring jobs back home.
Vanity Fair’s detailed investigation of Mitt Romney’s offshore holdings in foreign tax havens has raised serious questions. But foreign capital and the shadowy world of offshore investments can be complicated. Here is a detailed FAQ to use as a guide for wrapping your head around the issues:
What is a tax haven, and why does Mitt Romney have financial interests in a place like the Cayman Islands?
A tax haven is a country, like the Cayman Islands, with low tax rates and a lack of transparency. These tax havens are estimated to cost the United States $100 billion a year as the result of wealthy Americans like Romney who invest money through offshore entities. Romney’s continued association with his former private equity firm is part of the reason some of his money is held there:
“The firm today has at least 138 funds organized in the Cayman Islands, and Romney himself has personal interests in at least 12, worth as much as $30 million, hidden behind controversial confidentiality disclaimers. Again, the Romney campaign insists he saves no tax by using them, but there is no way to check this.” —Vanity Fair
What’s this about a company he owned in Bermuda?
For many years Mitt Romney has kept secret a Bermuda-based corporation he owns, even shifting it to a trust the day before becoming governor of Massachusetts—then keeping it off disclosure forms he was required to file in Massachusetts. But when he released one full year of tax returns—under pressure from fellow Republicans—it was discovered that he and his wife have full ownership of this corporation. Shell corporations like this one are sometimes established in tax havens to avoid U.S. taxes. Romney continues to omit the Bermuda company from financial disclosure statements he’s been required to file when running for office.
“While the Romneys’ spokespeople insist that the couple has paid all the taxes required by law, investments in tax havens such as Bermuda raise many questions, because they are in ‘jurisdictions where there is virtually no tax and virtually no compliance,’ as one Miami-based offshore lawyer put it.” —Vanity Fair
How much money was in his Swiss bank account?
In addition to millions of dollars kept in foreign tax havens, Romney had $3 million in a Swiss bank account. This revelation appears in the only tax return Romney has released, but no one knows whether he’s paid all the appropriate taxes on it. On his many foreign accounts:
“These, plus the mandatory financial disclosures filed with the Office of Government Ethics and released last August, raise many questions. A full 55 pages in his 2010 return are devoted to reporting his transactions with foreign entities ... The media soon noticed Romney’s familiarity with foreign tax havens. A $3 million Swiss bank account appeared in the 2010 returns, then winked out of existence in 2011 after the trustee closed it.” —Vanity Fair
What’s so secretive about all this and how is Panama involved?
Mitt Romney has consistently refused to explain why he doesn’t keep more of his money here at home, and digging further into his past only reveals more mystery. When Romney was raising money for his corporate buyout firm, Vanity Fair says he relied on “secrecy-shrouded foreign money,” turning to places like El Salvador, the Bahamas, and Panama for help:
“The filings also show a Geneva-based trustee overseeing a trust that invested $2.5 million, a Bahamas corporation that put in $3 million, and three corporations in the tax haven of Panama, historically a favored destination for Latin-American dirty money—‘one of the filthiest money-laundering sinks in the world,’ as a U.S. Customs official once put it. Bain Capital has said it did everything required by the U.S. government to check that the investors were not associated with unsavory interests. U.S. law doesn’t require Bain to enforce the tax laws of its investors’ home countries, but the presence of Swiss trustees, Bahamas trusts, and Panama corporations would raise red flags with any tax authority.” —Vanity Fair
Is any of this actually illegal?
It appears not, but it’s impossible to know for sure because Romney refuses to release enough information to let people make their own judgments:
“The assertion that he broke no laws is widely accepted. But it is worth asking if it is actually true. The answer, in fact, isn’t straightforward. Romney, like the superhero who whirls and backflips unscathed through a web of laser beams while everyone else gets zapped, is certainly a remarkable financial acrobat. But careful analysis of his financial and business affairs also reveals a man who, like some other Wall Street titans, seems comfortable striding into some fuzzy gray zones.” —Vanity Fair
Why does it matter?
If Romney continues to keep this information hidden, voters can’t make judgments about his perspective or motivations on critical policy matters. Unless he releases more tax returns, we won’t know if he made these decisions to avoid paying U.S. taxes. Americans fail to pay $450 billion in taxes each year, and voters deserve to know whether or not Romney is one of them:
“Come August, Romney, with an estimated net worth as high as $250 million (he won’t reveal the exact amount), will be one of the richest people ever to be nominated for president. Given his reticence to discuss his wealth, it’s only natural to wonder how he got it, how he invests it, and if he pays all his taxes on it.” —Vanity Fair
If you’re still curious, check out this video about the questions raised by Mitt Romney’s failure to release more than a single full year of tax returns.