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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Ann Romney Refuses to Release More Tax Returns


In an interview scheduled to be broadcast Thursday evening on NBC's “Rock Center,” Ann Romney, the wife of the Republican nominee, Mitt Romney, found herself facing some of the same questions that have dogged her husband's campaign in recent weeks - namely, about the Romney family's tax returns.

“There's nothing we're hiding,” Mrs. Romney told Natalie Morales, a correspondent for the show.

In a video clip released in advance of the show, Ms. Morales broached the subject of the Romneys' finances and tax returns by acknowledging that it's “not a question that's welcome,” before asking, “Why not be transparent?”

“Have you seen how we're attacked?” Mrs. Romney said, leaning for ward in her chair. “Have you seen what's happened?”

Mr. Romney has agreed to release just two years of his tax returns - from 2011, and an estimate from 2012 - but when pressed by Ms. Morales, Mrs. Romney stood her ground, echoing some of her husband's talking points.

“We have been very transparent to what's legally required of us,” she said. “But the more we release, the more we get attacked, the more we get questioned, the more we get pushed. And so we have done what's legally required, and there's going to be no more tax releases given.”

Mrs. Romney added that her husband had released financial disclosures during his time as governor of Massachusetts, and voters and reporters were welcome to look through those forms.

“Mitt is honest. His integrity is just golden,” she said. “Beyond paying our taxes, we also give 10 percent of our income to charity.” (Mrs. Romney was referring to the 10 percent of their income that the family tit hes to the Mormon Church, in accordance with church tradition).

Explaining the couple's reticence to release more information, she added, “It will just give them more ammunition.”

When Ms. Morales mentioned that some voters were worried about tax shelters and overseas accounts in her and Mr. Romney's name, Mrs. Romney reiterated her initial point that the couple was following the rule of the law.

“There's nothing we're hiding,” she said. “We've had a blind trust for how many years. We don't even know what's in there.”
She joked: “I'll be curious to see what's in there, too.”