Whole lot of people, including national leaders of the Republican party, have been calling Harry Reid a liar but they’re wrong. Harry Reid told the truth. He didn’t accuse Mr. Romney of anything directly. Harry said someone he feels is credible told him Mitt Romney didn’t pay any income taxes for several years and he believes that person. The circumstantial evidence suggests they’re right.
One key point that’s been missing so far in the discussion, is how Mr. Romney worded his denials about his tax payments. Mr. Romney said he “paid lots of taxes.” That’s no doubt true. He owns several very expensive properties and numerous pricey vehicles. His wife owns several hundred thousand dollar horses. So he would be unable to avoid paying some hefty property taxes at the very least. But that’s not what Harry Reid said.
Harry Reid specifically referenced federal income taxes. Mr. Romney’s denials very carefully avoided using the word, income. And that’s the issue here. Extremely wealthy multi-millionaires like Mitt Romney have an army of lawyers and accountants who can exploit the loopholes in the tax code to avoid paying any income tax whatsoever. Indeed, the IRS posted a list of people who are much richer than Mitt Romney who managed to pay zero income taxes on incomes much larger than his. Which destroys the entire premise of the traffic trolling, media “fact-checkers” who failed to make the appropriate distinction.
Of course, one indisputable fact remains. The question could be resolved in a hot minute. Instead of whining that Harry Reid is being so mean to him, Mitt Romney could prove he paid “lots” of income taxes simply by releasing the same number of tax returns as President Obama. It would be the honest and fair thing to do.
Which leaves us with the still unanswered question, why won’t he just release his tax returns? What is Mitt Romney hiding? [links via]