Tag Archives: Bain Capital

Romney Faces Fire after Revealing His Tax Rate

Mitt Romney

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Under pressure from rivals to release his tax returns, Mitt Romney said on Tuesday that he paid a tax rate approaching 15% on his millions of dollars in annual income.

His tax rate was “probably closer to the 15 percent rate than anything,” Mr. Romney said at a campaign stop in South Carolina, noting that most of his income has come from investments and not from salary. He also characterized as “not very much” the $374,327 he earned in speaking fees last year, though that sum would itself catapult most American families into the top 1% of the country’s earners.

His remarks drew criticism from the Obama administration and Republican rivals and will cement Mr. Romney’s place as an emblem of the national debate over taxation and income inequality.

In acknowledging that most of his income comes from investments, Mr. Romney underscored a fact likely to figure prominently in attacks from Democrats in the coming months: He is among the small percentage of wealthy Americans who have benefited enormously from shifts in federal tax policy that have pushed federal tax rates on investment income well below the top 35% rate for wages and salaries.

Mr. Romney probably pays a lower overall rate than many other wealthy Americans, who typically take home more income from salaries and wages than does Mr. Romney.

Like other people who amass wealth at hedge funds or private equity firms, Mr. Romney earned much of his money at Bain in the form of “carried interest,” a share of the profits earned by investors in Bain funds, which federal rules treat as capital gains taxed at a 15% rate.

The Romneys also derive significant income from other investments and mutual funds.

During 2010 and the first nine months of 2011, the Romney family had at least $9.6 million in income, according to a financial disclosure filed in August.

Mr. Romney’s fortune of between $190 million and $250 million makes him one of the wealthiest men to run for President.

As a candidate, Mr. Romney has also advocated tax policies that would benefit people who, like him, derive most of their income from investments. Assuming Congress does not act to extend the Bush-era tax cuts, the rate for capital gains income is set to return to 20% for the 2013 tax year, while the rate for dividend income will jump to 39.6%. In his economic plan, Mr. Romney calls for making permanent the Bush-era tax cuts on capital gains and dividend income, keeping them both at 15%.

Via The New York Times.

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Filed under Economy, Politics, Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Republicans Attack Romney in South Carolina

Mitt Romney

Image by Dave Delay via Flickr

A day after Mitt Romney’s victory in New Hampshire, he was greeted in South Carolina by attacks on his business record, his past support for abortion rights, and his character.

Newt Gingrich, Governor Rick Perry, and their allies sought to portray Mr. Romney as insufficiently steadfast in his conservatism, threatening a scorched-earth approach to the primary to be held here on January 21.

Mr. Gingrich said he would not back off. Mr. Perry kept up his critique of what he has called Mr. Romney’s “vulture capitalism.”

It was Day One of what a ten-day test of whether conservatives can marshal the arguments, tactics, and unity to slow Mr. Romney and rally around a single alternative.

Mr. Romney used his campaign to create a backlash against the attacks on his record at Bain. His Boston headquarters held conference calls with his endorsers, sent talking points to supporters, and enlisted go-betweens to tell leaders of the pro-Gingrich group Winning Our Future that they were harming the party with the attacks.

Mr. Romney’s team made headway in casting his opponents as abandoning their own party’s support for the free market. It received backing Wednesday from two political voices that have had the respect of the Tea Party movement: Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina and Senator Jim DeMint.

In the morning, Mr. Romney had declared the attacks against his business background a failure.

Via The New York Times.


Filed under Business, Politics

Schultz: Romney is a “Job Cremator”

English: Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Congressman...

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In an interview with Talking Points Memo, DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz pushed back against any pronouncements of Romney’s inevitable nomination.

“I would not put the cart before the horse and define him as an unambiguous frontrunner,” chair Schultz said in an interview in Manchester. “He’s coming off what at some point probably wont even be defined as a win in Iowa where fewer voters came out for him than came out in 2008.” She added that anything less than 50% in New Hampshire should be interpreted as a sign of weakness given his close ties to the state.

As polls show Mr. Romney threatening to secure the nomination, Democrats are unveiling campaigns to redefine his business experience. Party officials have held events in Iowa and New Hampshire with Randy Johnson, a worker who was laid off from his job at American Pad and Paper under Bain Capital’s management in the 1990s. Bain’s layoffs under Mr. Romney will be a critical part of their election strategy should he win the nomination. Mr. Romney says his opponents are cherry-picking his failures and ignoring success stories, but his campaign has been unable to substantiate its claims that he created jobs. Critics note that even Bain’s failures created a profit for Romney and his investors through consulting fees and dividends.

Mitt Romney, I think, is more of a job cremator than a job creator,” Schultz said. She added: “He was a corporate buyout specialist at Bain Capital. He dismantled companies. He cut jobs. He forced companies into bankruptcy and he outsourced jobs and sent jobs overseas. That’s not a record to write home about, that’s not a record to be proud of, and it’s something voters need to know.”

Via TPM.

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Filed under Business, Politics