The Democrats are on a mission to “swift boat” GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, in similar fashion as the Republicans did to John Kerry. The Obama campaign continues to pound away at Romney’s “secret” investments in a newly released video. There’s nothing wrong with being wealthy, but when you are running for the highest office in the country, then it looks pretty bad that you have stashed away money in a few different countries — Switzerland, Cayman Islands and Bermuda — in tax havens. You are, in essence, skirting the tax laws in your own country.
How can you be trusted to have the best interests of the people on Main Street at heart, in as far as the tax code? Rep. Charlie Rangel once headed the powerful Ways and Means Committee, all the while having tax and ethics issues. Um, you can’t send the fox to guard the hen house.
The Obama campaign video says: “Mitt Romney is defying calls to release more than one year’s worth of tax returns. How long can Romney keep information on his investments in overseas tax havens secret? And why he did it in the first place? Time will tell.”
Some pundits have expressed their opinion on the Democratic attacks and on Romney’s campaign:
Alex Burns: “The Democratic attacks on Romney’s finances are based on circumstantial evidence and basically amount to: where there’s smoke, there’s fire. What’s inconvenient for Romney is that the smoke includes buzzwords like ‘Swiss bank account’ that tend to be problematic for him in focus groups.”
Mark Halperin: “We are at a potentially critical moment in the presidential race over the Democrats’ attempts to make Romney’s Swiss bank account, Cayman Island investment funds, and secret tax returns into what the Republicans’ Swift Boating effort was for John Kerry in 2004.”
Charlie Cook: “If President Obama’s campaign machine can define Mitt Romney before his own campaign even tries, my bet is Obama wins reelection.”
“Voters’ willingness to hire Romney is being severely damaged, at least in swing states, by the advertising efforts of the Obama campaign and Priorities USA, a pro-Obama super PAC. The ads are devastatingly tough, portraying the former Massachusetts governor as a private-equity version of Gordon Gekko, a heartless corporate barracuda who has made a fortune acquiring and looting companies, laying off workers, and ruining lives and communities.”
The notion that one stashes money away in foreign banks just because one can afford to and runs for the presidency as icing on the cake, doesn’t resonate with people on Main Street, many of whom are struggling to keep a roof over their heads. That’s bad for Mitt Romney. As Rick Santorum said on the campaign trail, Mitt Romney is the worst candidate to go up against Barack Obama in November. The Obama campaign is pushing Mitt Romney in a box by defining him as one who skirts the tax code and doesn’t really have a plan to fix what ails this country because he is out of touch with the needs of people on Main Street. Add his reluctance to release more years of tax returns to the mix. Even former Mississippi Republican governor Haley Barbour is saying that he should.
This article was cross-posted from The Hinterland Gazette