..Bain Documents: Romney Offshore Investments Used 'Blockers' To Avoid Taxes
By MATTHEW MOSK and EMILY FRIEDMAN | ABC News – 8 hrs ago.. .
The private equity firm founded by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made use of arcane techniques in several of its Cayman Islands-based funds to avoid U.S. taxes, according to a trove of Bain Capital's private audit and finance records made public on the website Gawker today.
The audited financial statements of one of the Cayman Islands funds make note of the use of "blocker" entities, which are used to help retirement accounts and nonprofit entities avoid some taxes. Financial statements for another fund note that it "intends to conduct its operations so it will … not be subject to United States federal income or withholding tax ..."
Those details emerge on the statements of two funds in which Romney still holds a sizeable investment, according to the financial disclosure statements he filed when he announced his bid for president.
The publication of the Bain Documents on the Gawker website could rekindle debate about Romney's role at the company, and specifically about Bain's decision to domicile many of its funds in offshore locations known as tax havens.
Critics say Romney's investments in these funds offer just the latest example of how wealthy Americans can shelter their investments to limit the amount they pay in taxes.
"The only reason they structure it that way is to avoid tax," said Rebecca Wilkins, senior counsel with the group Citizens for Tax Justice. "It just confirms what everyone already believes about the tax system -- that it's rigged. That the rules are rigged to favor the well off."
"The lessons I learned over my 15 years at Bain Capital were valuable in helping me turn around the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. They also helped me as governor of Massachusetts to turn a budget deficit into a surplus and reduce our unemployment rate to 4.7 percent," Romney writes in the editorial published online late Thursday. "The lessons from that time would help me as president to fix our economy, create jobs and get things done in Washington."
Looks to me like you're just desperate to turn this around on Reid in some way.
Are you seriously going to tell me that you're condemning Reid for not misusing his powers and not peeking inside Romney's taxes?
Appearing at The Lafayette Club in Minnetonka Beach, the Republican presidential candidate offered the following remarks, per the pool report.
Quote:I'm going to champion small business. We've got to make it easier for small businesses. Big business is doing fine in many places -– they get the loans they need, they can deal with all the regulation. They know how to find ways to get through the tax code, save money by putting various things in the places where there are low tax havens around the world for their businesses. But small business is getting crushed.
“I love being home, in this place where Ann and I were raised. Where both of us were born...No one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate. They know this is the place where we were born and raised.”
Zing! Nice one Mitt.
No one needed to. He's been a public servant his whole life.
RNC spokesman on Romney going birther: Learn how to take a joke
Republican National Committee communications director Sean Spicer has a few words of advice from anyone who was taken aback by Mitt Romney's embrace of birtherism earlier today in Michigan: you need to learn how to take a joke. "Look," said Spicer. "It's a light-hearted moment. He was stating a fact. He's proud of the fact that we was born in Michigan." According to Spicer, anyone who says Romney's comment was "anything more than that is taking it a little bit too far."
So if you thought Mitt Romney was suggesting something about President Obama when he boasted that "no one has ever asked to see my birth certificate" because "they know that this is the place that we were born and raised," you just don't have Mitt's vibrant sense of humor. If you thought he was speaking directly to Donald Trump and Orly Taitz and Rush Limbaugh, you just can't take a joke. Because Romney was just being a comedian. Har, har! We must all guffaw uproariously in unison at Mr. Romney's comic stylings.
You know what this defense of Romney reminds me of? It reminds me of how one of his buddy's at Cranbrook defended him from the Washington Post's report on his days as a high school bully:
My suspicion is that they jokingly said 'Hey, let's go cut his hair.' And went down the hall, and you know, you hold the scissors close to his ear, and you make a lot of snipping sounds, and you may traumatize the guy a little, or scare the guy a little, but no harm, no foul.
If that's Mitt Romney's idea of a joke, then maybe he was joking today, but that doesn't make him a funny guy. And being the same kind of guy today that he was in high school isn't something for him to be bragging about.