Obama could look at Romney’s tax returns if he wanted to


Regular readers of Applesauce generally are smarter than the average blogoshere surfer, but I doubt that any of them knew about THIS:

Although Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney refuses to release his tax returns from the years prior to 2010, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, President Barack Obama and key members of Congress could all view any tax document that Romney has filed. Under some circumstances, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) could even verify whether his anonymous Bain investor was telling the truth that Romney “didn’t pay any taxes for 10 years.”

According to Title 26 of U.S. Code Section 6103, the treasury secretary can disclose any personal tax return to the president “or to such employee or employees of the White House Office as the President may designate.”

Members of Congress can also access Romney’s earlier tax returns by making a written request to Geithner. The Senate Finance Committee, the House Ways and Means Committee, and the Joint Committee on Taxation are all mentioned as committees that can access individual tax returns. The chairman of any other congressional committee can also obtain access for his or her entire panel, provided the request meets one caveat.




  1. James C. Davis of Byron seemed to have known this information : http://rockrivertimes.com/2012/08/22/bain-capitalromneyobamataxes/

    I think… It’s difficult to grasp the meaning here.

  2. robert porter

    President Ronald Reagan
    “Trust but verify.”

    Commentator Bill Kristol
    “Here’s what he should do. He should release the tax returns tomorrow. This is crazy… you’ve got to release 6, 8, 10 years of back tax returns. Take the hit for a day or two. Then give a serious speech on Thursday…” Fox News

    US Representative Ron Paul (R-TX)
    “Politically, I think that would help him,” the Republican congressman and former presidential candidate said in an interview with POLITICO. “In the scheme of things politically, you know, it looks like releasing tax returns is what the people want.”

    Businessman and philanthropist Jon Huntsman Sr.
    Jon Huntsman Sr. urged Mitt Romney on Friday to release more tax returns and said he feels “very badly” that the presumptive Republican presidential nominee “won’t be fair with the American people.” Huntsman, a supporter of Romney’s campaign, made the remarks to Greg Sargent at the Washington Post. He said, “I’ve supported Mitt all along. I wish him well. But I do think he should release his income taxes.”

    US Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN)
    “It was quite a number which we released,” said Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar, who ran for president in 1996. He added it would be “prudent” for Romney to release more years of his tax returns. I have no idea on why he has restricted the number to this point,” Lugar said. CBS

    US Representative Walter Jones (R-NC)
    Rep. Walter Jones flatly told CNN Thursday that Romney needed to make at least six years’ worth of returns public — and soon. “I think he should release his financial records and I think if he does it in July it would be a lot better than in October,” Jones said. “Whenever you are asking for the vote of the American people that you need to fully disclose what your holdings are, if you have any.”

    Commentator George Will
    “Oh, Mitt Romney is losing at this point in a big way. If something’s going to come out, get it out in a hurry,” Will said this morning on the “This Week” roundtable. “I do not know why, given that Mitt Romney knew the day that [John] McCain lost in 2008 that he was going to run for president again that he didn’t get all of this out and tidy up some of his offshore accounts and all the rest.”

    Governor Robert Bentley (R-AL)
    “I think he ought to release everything. I believe in total transparency,” Bentley told reporters. “You know if you have things to hide, then you may be doing things wrong.”

    Governor Haley Babour (R- MS)
    “He ought to release his returns,” Barbour tells National Review Online. “Any time this campaign’s conversation is not about President Obama’s failed policies,” particularly his economic record, “then the [Romney] campaign isn’t talking about the right thing….This is what the Obama people have been praying for,” Barbour says. “The news media has been playing right into their hand, chasing this around. You would think this is the only thing happening in the campaign, which is why Romney needs to put it behind him. It’s a distraction and he needs to get back to what matters.”

    Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele
    “If there’s nothing there, there’s no ‘there’ there, don’t create a there.”

    US Senator John McCain (R-AZ)
    “I am absolutely confident that [Romney] … did pay taxes.” McCain told the Las Vegas Sun’s Jon Ralston during an interview set to air on his “Face to Face” program on Tuesday. “Nothing in his tax returns showed that he did not pay taxes.”

    OK. What does Senator John McCain know that the American people and his Republican supporters don’t know?

  3. JayMagoo

    If Romney’s political advisers are as shrewd and thorough as his tax advisers, and they still tell him to not take any chances, my guess that whatever is in those hidden tax returns is political dynamite. It would quickly torpedo Romney’s campaign and might even bring about criminal charges. Romney is an obnoxious arrogant rich SOB, but he’s also not going to commit political suicide — or in this case, hari-kari. He’d rather take the chance of getting months of political negativity than have the public know what’s really in those returns. It’s got to be really, really bad. The fact that he’s taking the chance means that the negative publicity is the lessor of two evils. The truth would be a death sentence.

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