We all knew that Romney is wealthy. The problem is that he doesn’t seem comfortable discussing his wealth, or hanging out with ordinary voters. He prefers discussing things like that in “quiet rooms.” He only released his tax returns after people like Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey told him it was the right thing to do. Before releasing them he said that he paid close to 15% of his income in taxes. The actual returns show that he paid 13.9% of his almost $22 million in income in 2010 and expects to pay 15.4% in 2011. Even more interesting is the fact that Romney doesn’t have to do a thing to get that $22 million. His assets are all in a “blind trust” where the trustee makes all decisions. Since he doesn’t have to work, he can do things like take six years out of his life indulging in his hobby of running for political office. The good news is that he probably can’t be bought.
Gingrich, on the other hand, actually had to work to get his millions in income. I’m not saying that he had to put on a hard hat and run a jack hammer in a coal mine, breathing in coal dust all the live long day. But he did have to exercise his dial finger, probably building quite the callus, calling all of the friends and acquaintances he accumulated as Speaker. No doubt the experience prepared him for a presidential run, since it was hard work urging the recipients of his calls to make sure that Freddie Mac continued to be viewed favorably in congress. The man who actually “worked” for a living paid 32% of his income into the U.S. Treasury. He avoided paying even more by using a tax loophole. He avoided paying into Medicare by setting himself up as a Sub S Corporation.
Gingrich claiming that he didn’t work as a lobbyist is a bunch of pious baloney. Lobbying is the act of influencing legislators to vote in favor of an issue. Gingrich reported to the head lobbyist at Freddie Mac. He didn’t get that callus on his finger because he was discussing history with a bunch of guys on K-Street or in the capital. He got that callus because he was connected to people who could make decisions impacting the regulation and funding of Freddie Mac. That’s a lobbyist.
Romney Tax Returns
Gingrich Consulting Contract
Gingrich Tax Returns
Gingrich Tax Rate