Mitt Romney has come under increasing pressure from fellow Republicans in recent days to release more of his tax returns to the public.
The former Massachusetts governor and presumptive Republican nominee has so far only released his 2010 tax return and an estimate of his 2011 taxes, with a promise to release his actual 2011 tax return once it is finished (see Former IRS Commissioner Gives Blessing to Mitt Romney's Taxes). However, he has steadfastly refused to release any other returns. “The Obama people keep on wanting more and more and more,” he said on "Fox & Friends" on Monday. “More things to pick through, more things for their opposition research to try make a mountain out of and to distort and to be dishonest about. We’re going to put out two years of tax returns.”
On Sunday, conservative commentators George Will and Bill Kristol both called on Romney to release more of his returns.
“If something’s going to come out, get it out in a hurry,” Will said on the ABC News program “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” “I do not know why, given that Mitt Romney knew the day that 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. “
“The costs of not releasing the returns are clear,” Will added. “Therefore, he must have calculated that there are higher costs in releasing them.”
Kristol also advised Romney to release more of his tax returns. "Here’s what he should do,” Kristol said on "Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace." “He should release the tax returns tomorrow. This is crazy… you’ve got to release six, eight, 10 years of back tax returns. Take the hit for a day or two. Then give a serious speech on Thursday.”
Robert Bentley, the Republican governor of Alabama, urged Romney to release more tax returns last week, saying, “I release my tax returns. I may be the only public official in Alabama that does, but I release mine every year. I just believe that people should release their tax returns,” he told ABC News on Saturday. “And if you get them out and get past that, it just makes it so much easier.”
Romney’s father George released 12 years of tax returns when he campaigned for the presidency in 1967, and many presidential candidates have followed his lead since that time in releasing tax returns for multiple years. When Obama ran for President in 2008, he released his tax returns for 2000 to 2006, although his rival, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., only released his 2006 and 2007 returns.
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