Campaign Headlines August 17, 2012: Obama Aide Says 5 Years of Mitt Romney’s Tax Returns Would Suffice

CAMPAIGN 2012

CAMPAIGN BUZZ 2012

THE HEADLINES….

IN FOCUS: THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN & MITT ROMNEY’S TAX RETURNS

Obama Aide Says 5 Years of Romney Taxes Would Suffice

Source: NYT, 8-17-12

A day after Mitt Romney said he paid at least 13 percent of his income in taxes each year, President Obama’s campaign manager said five years of Mr. Romney’s tax returns would satisfy Democrats….READ MORE

Obama Camp to Romney: Five Years of Tax Returns and We’ll Lay Off

Source: ABC News Radio, 8-17-12

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Obama campaign manager Jim Messina has promised the campaign will stop pressing Mitt Romney on his tax returns if the presumptive Republican presidential nominee releases five years of returns.

In a letter to Romney campaign manager Matt Rhoades, Messina writes, “Governor Romney apparently fears that the more he offers, the more our campaign will demand that he provide.  So I am prepared to provide assurances on just that point: if the Governor will release five years of returns, I commit in turn that we will not criticize him for not releasing more — neither in ads nor in other public communications or commentary for the rest of the campaign.”

The five years Messina is requesting covers “the complete returns for 2007-2012,” which he says “would appropriately span all the years that he has been a candidate for President.”

“It would also help answer outstanding questions raised by the one return he has released to date, such as the range in the effective rates paid, the foreign accounts maintained, the foreign investments made, and the types of tax shelters used,” he continues….READ MORE

Campaign Headlines August 16, 2012: Mitt Romney Says He Never Paid Less Than 13% In Income Taxes

CAMPAIGN 2012

CAMPAIGN BUZZ 2012

THE HEADLINES….

Romney Says He Paid at Least 13% in Income Taxes

Source: NYT, 8-16-12

Mitt Romney in South Carolina on Thursday, outlining a point on Medicare before answering a question about income taxes.
Evan Vucci/Associated Press

Mitt Romney in South Carolina on Thursday, outlining a point on Medicare before answering a question about income taxes.

Calling interest in his taxes “small-minded,” Mitt Romney said he had looked at 10 years of returns, a response to Democrats who suggested he might have paid nothing in some years….READ MORE

Romney Says He Never Paid Less Than 13% In Taxes

Source: ABC News Radio, 8-16-12

Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Mitt Romney said today he has not paid less than 13 percent in taxes during the past ten years. The candidate had told ABC News’ David Muir last month that he’d be “happy to go back and look” at his returns.

The tax issue has been a touchy one for Romney and he made clear that he feels there are more important issues on which to concentrate.

“I just have to say given the challenges that America faces 23 million people out of work, Iran about to become nuclear, one out of six Americans in poverty, the fascination with  taxes I paid I find to be very small minded compared to the broad issues we face,” he said. “But I did go back and look at my taxes and over the past 10 years I never paid less than 13 percent. I think the most recent year is 13.6 or something like that,” Romney said today during a press conference on a tarmac in South Carolina, where the candidate came to attend a fundraiser….READ MORE

Political Headlines April 16, 2012: Senate Republicans Reject President Barack Obama’s Buffett Rule 30 Percent Income Tax Rate for Millionaires

POLITICAL HEADLINES

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

THE HEADLINES….

IN FOCUS: SENATE REPUBLICANS REJECT PRESIDENT OBAMA’S BUFFETT RULE 30% INCOME TAX RATE FOR MILLIONAIRES

Senate rejects Obama plan for 30% tax rate for millionaires: The U.S. Senate, by a vote of 51-45, has blocked consideration of the Buffett Rule, a key initiative by President Obama to require millionaires to pay a minimum tax rate of 30 percent. Republicans kept the measure from receiving the 60 votes necessary to allow the Senate to open debate…. – WaPo, 4-16-12

  • Republicans reject ‘Buffett rule’ in the Senate: Republican-led opposition blocked the ‘Buffett rule’ from advancing in the Senate, turning back an election year effort by President Obama to slap a new tax rate on those earning beyond $1 million a year…. – LAT, 4-16-12
  • Senate fails to advance Buffett rule: The Democratic-controlled Senate failed on Monday to reach a super-majority needed to pass a tax plan offered by President Obama to require millionaires to pay a 30% minimum effective tax rate…. – USA Today, 4-16-12
  • Senate Blocks Buffett Rule 30% Tax Floor on Top Earners: The US Senate blocked the proposed Buffett rule that would set a minimum 30 percent federal tax rate for the highest earners. The 51-45 vote today in Washington fell short of the 60 needed to advance the measure…. – BusinessWeek, 4-16-12
  • Senate GOP blocks Obama’s ‘Buffett rule’ minimum tax on millionaires: Senate Republicans blocked President Obama’s so-called “Buffett Rule,” as the proposed minimum tax rate for millionaires failed to advance in a procedural vote Monday. The measure received majority support, 51-45, but 60 votes were required for the … – Fox News, 4-16-12

Full Text Obama Presidency April 14, 2012: President Barack Obama’s Weekly Address Urges Congress to Pass the Buffett Rule — 30 Percent Income Tax Rate for Millionaires

POLITICAL SPEECHES & DOCUMENTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 112TH CONGRESS:

President Obama urges Congress to pass the Buffett Rule — which asks those who make more than $1 million a year to pay at least the same percentage of their income in taxes as middle class families — as a principle of fairness.

  1. President Obama tapes the Weekly Address

Weekly Address: It’s Time for Congress to Pass the Buffett Rule

Source: WH, 4-14-12

President Obama urges Congress to pass the Buffett Rule — which asks those who make more than $1 million a year to pay at least the same percentage of their income in taxes as middle class families — as a principle of fairness.

Transcript |Download mp4 | Download mp3

For more information:

POLITICAL QUOTES & SPEECHES

WEEKLY ADDRESS: It’s Time for Congress to Pass the Buffett Rule

In this week’s address, President Obama urged Congress to pass the Buffett Rule, a principle of fairness that says if you make more than $1 million a year, you should pay at least the same percentage of your income in taxes as middle class families.  Meanwhile, if you make under $250,000 a year – like 98 percent of American families do – your taxes shouldn’t go up.  The President has been pushing Congress to pass the Buffett rule to help ensure we have a system that’s fair, where everyone plays by the same set of rules and we can continue to make the investments we need to grow our economy and help the middle class and those trying to get in it.

Remarks of President Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
April 14, 2012

One of the fundamental challenges of our time is building an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same rules.

And as many Americans rush to file their taxes this weekend, it’s worth pointing out that we’ve got a tax system that doesn’t always uphold the principle of everyone doing their part.

Now, this is not just about fairness.  This is also about growth.  It’s about being able to make the investments we need to strengthen our economy and create jobs.  And it’s about whether we as a country are willing to pay for those investments.

In a perfect world, of course, none of us would have to pay any taxes. We’d have no deficits to pay down.  And we’d have all the resources we needed to invest in things like schools and roads and a strong military and new sources of energy – investments that have always bolstered our economy and strengthened the middle class.

But we live in the real world, with real choices and real consequences. Right now, we’ve got significant deficits to close.  We’ve got serious investments to make to keep our economy growing.  And we can’t afford to keep spending more money on tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans who don’t need them and didn’t even ask for them.

Warren Buffett is one of the wealthiest men in the world.  But he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary.  That’s just the way the system is set up.  In fact, one in four millionaires pays a lower tax rate than millions of hardworking middle-class households.

As Warren points out, that’s not fair and it doesn’t make sense.  It’s wrong that middle-class Americans pay a higher share of their income in taxes than some millionaires and billionaires.

This week, Members of Congress are going to have a chance to set things right.  They get to vote on what we call the Buffett Rule.

It’s simple:  If you make more than $1 million every year, you should pay at least the same percentage of your income in taxes as middle-class families do.  On the other hand, if you make less than $250,000 a year — like 98 percent of American families do — your taxes shouldn’t go up.

That’s all there is to it.  It’s pretty sensible.  Most Americans support this idea. One survey found that two-thirds of millionaires do, too.  So do nearly half of all Republicans.

We just need some Republican politicians to get on board with where the country is.

I know they’ll say that this is all about wanting to raise people’s taxes.  They probably won’t tell you that if you belong to a middle-class family, then I’ve cut your taxes each year that I’ve been in office, and I’ve cut taxes for small business owners 17 times.

But the thing is, for most Americans like me, tax rates are near their lowest point in 50 years. In 2001 and 2003, the wealthiest Americans received two huge new tax cuts.  We were told these tax cuts would lead to faster job growth. Instead, we got the slowest job growth in half a century, and the typical American family actually saw its income fall.

On the flip side, when the most well-off Americans were asked to pay a little more in the 1990s, we were warned that it would kill jobs. Instead, tens of millions of jobs followed.

So we’ve tried this trickle-down experiment before. It doesn’t work. And middle class families have seen too much of their security erode over the past few decades for us to tell them they’re going to have to do more because the wealthiest Americans are going to do less.  We can’t stop investing in the things that will help grow our economy and create jobs – things like education, research, new sources of energy – just so folks like me can get another tax cut.

So I hope you’ll ask your Member of Congress to step up and echo that call this week by voting for the Buffett Rule. Remind them that in America, prosperity has never just trickled down from a wealthy few.  Prosperity has always been built by a strong, thriving middle class.  That’s a principle worth reaffirming right now.

Thank you, God bless you, and have a great weekend.

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