Tags: schmidt | mccain | romney | taxes

McCain Aide: Romney Taxes Were Complex, Not Disqualifying

Sunday, 22 Jul 2012 07:15 PM

By Patrick Hobin

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Mitt Romney’s tax returns show that he is extremely wealthy and look nothing like the average American’s returns but there is nothing that rises to the level of disqualification for the White House, a former campaign aide to Sen. John McCain told The Hill.

McCain’s former campaign aide, Steve Schmidt, also said that Romney’s returns had nothing to do with not being selected to be McCain’s running mate in 2008. McCain selected then-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate.

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"Mitt Romney went through this process and what I can tell you is that he's a person of decency with the highest ethical character and background," Schmidt told The Hill. "There was nothing that was disqualifying. That pick in 2008 was not about any deficiency with Mitt Romney. It was a political decision that we made in a very bad political circumstance."

Schmidt viewed 23 years of Romney’s tax returns when McCain requested them as part of the vice presidential vetting process and said they were extremely complex.

Romney's tax returns "do not look anything like the average American," but held nothing which prevented him from being on the ticket, Schmidt told The Hill.
Romney has defended his decision to keep his tax records private to avoid handing President Barack Obama ammunition.

"In the political environment that exists today, the opposition research of the Obama campaign is looking for anything they can use to distract from the failure of the president to reignite our economy," Romney told the National Review last week. "And I'm simply not enthusiastic about giving them hundreds or thousands of more pages to pick through, distort and lie about."

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