Mitt and Ann Romney may have earned between $15 million and $115 million from the auto bailout, but failing to report the windfall in his federal Candidate Disclosure Form may very well be a violation of the law.
Last week a formal complaint was filed with the Federal Office of Government Ethics by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), the United Auto Workers (UAW), along with other labor and nonpartisan watchdog groups.
In short, the allegations concern Delphi, a former General Motors subsidiary whose auto parts remain essential to GM’s production lines.
Back in 2009, Ann Romney partnered with Paul Singer to secretly purchase controlling interest in Delphi. [Bear in mind that billionaire Singer is one of Mitt Romney’s key campaign donors.] Elliot Management, Singer’s hedge fund, then threatened to cut off GM’s supply of steering columns and other key auto components unless GM, along with the government’s TARP auto bail-out fund provided them with large payments. The United States Treasury complained that this was “extortion”, but Delphi ultimately received $12.9 billion in taxpayer generated subsidies as no bailout of the auto industry could have worked without saving Delphi. Singer’s group then eliminated every UAW job in the company and then moved nearly its entire production operation to China and Mexico where Delphi now employes 25,000 auto parts workers at the expense of about that same number of jobs in the USA. [These allegations are particularly noteworthy considering the lies spread and later debunked by the auto industry itself, Detroit media the campaign misquoted, the Obama campaign and Pres. Bill Clinton. See Romney Called Out By Auto Industry, the Obama Campaign and Bill Clinton for Lying]
The resulting windfall for the Romneys means that shares Ann purchased for 67 cents are now worth over $30 for a 4 thousand percent gain earning the Romneys tens of millions of dollars. Additionally, one cannot forget billionaire Paul Singer who was identified by Forbes as one of Romney’s key campaign donors, Singer has given more than $1 million to the Romney SuperPAC known as Restore Our Future.
The UAW complaint calls for Romney to reveal exactly how much he made off Delphi — and continues to make.
At a press conference last week in Toledo, Bob King, President of the United Automobile Workers, announced that his union and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) have filed a formal complaint with the US Office of Government Ethics in Washington stating that Gov. Romney improperly hid a profit of $15.3 million to $115.0 million in Ann Romney’s so-called “blind” trust.
The United Auto Workers (UAW), the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and other groups plan to file an ethics complaint against Mitt Romney for allegedly failing to disclose his profits from the auto bailout, the UAW has told The Huffington Post.
The groups are calling for an investigation by the U.S. Office of Government Ethics to investigate Romney’s alleged violation of the Ethics in Government Act, which requires presidential candidates to disclose their personal finances. The ethics complaint comes on the heels of an Oct. 17 article in The Nation, which alleged that Romney has hidden his personal gains of at least $15.3 million from the auto bailout.
"He made his fortune off the misfortune of others," Bob King, president of the UAW, told The Huffington Post on Wednesday. "Why should we have to find out from the media about this?"
The Romney campaign could not be immediately reached for comment.
The allegations are ironic given that Romney has been a staunch critic of the auto bailout. Romney called for the government to let the auto industry go bankrupt in an op-ed in The New York Times in 2008. The Romney campaign also released a misleading ad in October that claims Chrysler has moved all production of Jeeps to China following the auto bailout.
Romney and his wife allegedly made millions from the auto bailout through their investments in the hedge fund Elliott Management, which held a stake in the auto bailout recipient Delphi Automotive, according to The Nation.
H/T: Huffington Post
Ann Romney and First Lady Michelle Obama were interviewed for the November issue of Good Housekeeping magazine, just out. Our First Lady, of course was charming, positive and well-informed.
Mrs. Romney? Well …
Among her talking points, this:I’ve been a First Lady of the State. I have seen what happens to people’s lives if they don’t get a proper education. And we know the answers to that. The charter schools have provided the answers. The teachers’ unions are preventing those things from happening, from bringing real change to our educational system. We need to throw out the system.
Mrs. Romney, of course, is not an educator and has no experience as a teacher. Other than as a candidate’s wife (if then), she’s probably never even set a well-shod dainty foot inside a public school. She went to private school; so did her husband and children. And the “answers” the charter schools are providing? As mysterious as her tax returns. I guess we’ll just have to take her word for it.
And as is said at the end of every useless infomercial – but wait! There’s more.
Why do you think your husband is the best person to be President?I’d say because of his life experience, starting with the example [his father] George Romney set of being successful in his family and business and then serving in a political sphere… . The formula from his perspective was, you never get involved in politics unless you’re financially secure and your children are raised. So when our children were older and Mitt had made a bit of money, there was his father’s example that you find ways to serve and give back.
(Note: Poor people! Women with children! Young people! Stay out of politics!)
Yes, Mrs. Romney, because heaven knows you will never have to endure receiving the other kind of gold star.
But why serve? As Mrs. Romney said on The View last week, Mormon missions are the equivalent of military service:My five sons have also served their mission. None served in the military. None served in the military, but I do have one son that feels that he’s giving back to his country in a significant way where he is now a doctor, and he is taking care of veterans. So we find different ways of serving, and my five boys and my husband did serve missions, and did not serve in the military.
"I sent them away boys, and they came back men," she added.
It seems to me that Governor Romney’s entire campaign is based on his belief – and his wife’s – that he is somehow entitled to be President.
Let’s do everything we can during these next critical days to re-elect President Barack Obama.
Vote early if you can.
[A]ll the talk about we need smaller classroom size, look that’s promoted by the teachers unions to hire more teachers. … And as president I will stand up to the National Teachers Unions.
Mitt Romney obviously knows so much about education. It’s all a conspiracy theory by the unions! How many wanna bet that all five of Romney’s sons never sat in an elementary or high school classroom with 30+ other kids? (via sickeninglyliberal)
- Mitt Romney (and his wife Ann) went to a private preparatory boarding school called the Cranbrook School in Bloomfield Hills, MI. The student to teacher ratio at this school is 8:1. The current tuition for the 2012-2013 school year is $38,900.
- Mitt Romney’s five sons went to Belmont Hill School, a private boys school in Boston, MA. The student to teacher ratio at this school is 11:1. The current tuition for the 2012-2012 school year is $44,700.
Just some fun facts.
There you have it.
Ann Romney is a terrible role model for people to admire. On the other hand, Michelle Obama IS a really good role model for people to follow.
Ann Romney defended her husband’s closed-door comment that 47 percent of Americans are incurably dependent on governemnt and see themselves as “victims” in an interview Tuesday with Colorado station FOX31.
"It’s unfortunate when something gets misinterpreted like this or it gets taken out of context because if you really do listen to everything he does say, he’s talking about what we’re facing in America today," Romney said in the interview.
No, Ann, your hubby was NOT taken out of context at all.
In an interview with KWQC-TV6 today, Ann Romney refused to comment on the issues stemming from the ongoing War on Women, declining to address whether she believes women should have access to contraception through their employer-based insurance plans. Such questions are irrelevant, Romney said, because this election is not going to be about birth control:
KWQC TV6: Do you believe that employer-provided health insurance should be required to cover birth control?
ANN ROMNEY: Again, you’re asking me questions that are not about what this election is going to be about. This election is going to be about the economy and jobs.
KWQC TV6: Well, a Pew research poll shows those issues are very important to women, ranking them either “important” or “very important. […]
ANN ROMNEY: Listen, I’ve been across this country, I’ve been for a year-and-a-half on the campaign trail. I’ve spoken with thousands of women and they are telling me, they’re telling me a couple of things, one they say they’re praying for me which is really wonderful, and then they’re saying, ‘please help, please help. We are so worried about our jobs.’ So really if you want to try to pull me off of the other messages it’s not going to work because I know because I’ve been out there. […]
I’m going to talk to you about the economy and about job creation and about how my husband is the right person for the right time. This is going to be an election that is very important for women, and we are going to make sure that their economic prosperity is more certain under a President Romney.
Despite Romney’s attempt to pivot to the economy, her claim that birth control is “off message” ignores the real economic situation of women across America. In fact, women’s access to reproductive health services is inextricably linked to the economic issues that countless women face.
TAMPA, Fla. — The 2012 Republican National Convention began with a day of canceled events, and ended with a bizarre unscripted moment in which Clint Eastwood lectured an empty chair. And there were few true bright spots in between.
The party’s rising star, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, failed to impress with his much-hyped keynote address. The vaunted vice presidential nominee? His speech took a pounding from fact-checkers, potentially knocking the Romney campaign off kilter just as it enters the home stretch.
And then there’s the racially charged flying legumes.
There was much for Republicans to celebrate in Tampa: the fresh faces on stage who energized the room and revealed a deep Republican bench of young talent, the emergence of Ann Romney as a beloved national figure and a final night that went a long way toward humanizing Mitt Romney with compelling personal stories.
The weather system known as Isaac (which strengthened from a tropical storm to a hurricane and back over the course of the convention) cast dark clouds over Tampa in the days leading up to the official start of the convention Monday. Though the storm took a turn away from the convention site, organizers had to scramble and cancel a day, leading to public bickering over who was to blame for placing the convention and its thousands of attendees in the path of a major storm.
• The Ron Paul Revolution
For months, Ron Paul supporters exploited obscure primary and caucus rules long after Romney’s victory was apparent to amass a decent minority of delegates, many of them bound to Romney, for the convention. But when RNC officials passed new rules trying to prevent Paul backers from poaching more delegates in 2016, the Paul crowd erupted in anger.
On the first day of the convention, tensions boiled over as they staged a rowdy protest during the official roll call vote. On the second night, they sat for a video tribute to Paul, then walked out en masse, chanting anti-RNC slogans.
Paul Ryan’s Factually Challenged Speech
Romney’s running mate Paul Ryan fired up the crowd with a tough speech attacking Obama’s economic record Wednesday night. But numerous factual inaccuracies in his address were so glaring that they quickly became a major story of their own.
In the most-cited example, Ryan excoriated Obama over a GM plant that closed in his Janesville, Wis., district, which he trumpeted as a sign of the president’s economic failures. But the plant closed in 2008 under President Bush, mostly due to market trends that long predatedObama. As Obama’s auto czar Steve Rattner noted, Ryan’s insistence that Obama should have saved the individual assembly line also ran directly counter to his frequent refrain that the government shouldn’t be in the business of “picking winners and losers.”
• Constant Distractions, On Stage And Off
Mike Huckabee marred the RNC’s outreach to women when he made a personal joke about DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz on stage, which Democrats saw as sexist. Ann Romney, despite impressing just about everyone with her poised and warm address Tuesday, marred the Romney campaign’s outreach push to Hispanics when she said of Puerto Ricans, “you people know how to party.” Some Hispanic Republicans in the room were not happy.
• Clint Eastwood Debates An Empty Chair
The Romney campaign couldn’t have been more excited when word leaked that Clint Eastwood, a former Republican mayor in California, would make a surprise primetime appearance for the final night of the convention.
The Republican delegates loved it, at least. And so did the Internet, where people began taking photos of themselves arguing with chairs in a meme dubbed “Eastwooding.”
Fresh off her convention speech Tuesday night, Ann Romney spent Wednesday wooing two of the GOP’s toughest audiences: women and Hispanic voters. At a lunch event Wednesday, Romney explained why Hispanic voters should vote for her husband. Pitching herself as “the daughter of immigrants,” Romney (who is the granddaughter of a Welsh coal miner) urged Latinos to get past “some of their biases” and come to their senses:
You’d better really look at your future and figure out who’s going to be the guy that’s going to make it better for you and your children, and there is only one answer… It really is a message that would resonate well if they could just get past some of their biases that have been there from the Democratic machines that have made us look like we don’t care about this community. And that is not true. We very much care about you and your families and the opportunities that are there for you and your families.
Hispanic voters have so far remained skeptical of Mitt Romney and the Republican Party, who stood out as the most anti-immigrant candidate during the Republican primary and touted a plan to make undocumented immigrants so uncomfortable that they would “self-deport.” He has also promised to veto the DREAM Act that would give young undocumented immigrants who came to the US as children a path to citizenship.
TAMPA, Fla. — Ann Romney on Tuesday recounted her husband’s life story in her prime time convention speech, describing his effort to launch Bain Capital as a struggle with a high amount of risk.
"I was there when he and a small group of friends talked about starting a new company. I was there when they struggled and wondered if the whole idea just wasn’t going to work. Mitt’s reaction was to work harder and press on," she said.
The tale the Romneys are telling, however, is not true. Romney only agreed to run Bain Capital after he had been promised that he could have his old job back if it failed, plus raises he would’ve missed. He was also promised that if it failed, a cover story would be crafted so that he took none of the professional blame.
For their book “The Real Romney,” Boston Globe reporters Michael Kranish and Scott Helman interviewed Bill Bain, the founder of Bain & Co., who asked Romney to head Bain Capital. The story he tells couldn’t be more different than Mitt and Ann Romney’s.
h/t: Ryan Grim at HuffPo
My recap of the RNC: Day 1
Here is my recap of the RNC for the 1st night.
REMINDER: Scott Walker promised his right-wing policies would create 250K jobs. He’s way way way off schedule thkpr.gs/RkMPSt— ThinkProgress (@thinkprogress) August 29, 2012
FUN FACT: Ted Cruz opposes the Voting Rights Act thkpr.gs/RkMPSt— ThinkProgress (@thinkprogress) August 29, 2012
Ann Romney knows a lot of struggling people. Her husband shipped their jobs overseas.— Paul Conrad (@Paul_Conrad) August 29, 2012
.@maddow calls Chris Christie’s speech “One of the most remarkable acts of political selfishness that I have ever seen”— msnbc (@msnbc) August 29, 2012
Worst Persons: B: Ann Romney. S: Chris Christie. G: Nikki Haley
Mitt Romney’s wife Ann now speaking at the RNC. #rnc2012 #annromney #gop2012 #mittromney (Taken with Instagram)
The Obama campaign swiftly and harshly condemned a joke made by Mitt Romney about the president’s birth certificate on the campaign trail in Michigan Friday, saying Romney made the “decision to directly enlist himself in the birther movement.”
“I love being home, in this place where Ann and I were raised, where but the both of us were born,” Romney said after introducing his wife, fellow Michigan native Ann Romney. “No one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate. They know that this is the place where we were born and raised.”
“Throughout this campaign, Governor Romney has embraced the most strident voices in his party instead of standing up to them. It’s one thing to give the stage in Tampa to Donald Trump, Sheriff [Joe] Arpaio, and Kris Kobach,” Obama spokesperson Ben LaBolt said in a statement. “But Governor Romney’s decision to directly enlist himself in the birther movement should give pause to any rational voter across America.”
The Romney campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TPM. A Washington Post reporter tweeted soon after the joke that a Romney adviser told him, “The governor has always said, and has repeatedly said, he believes the president was born here in the United States.”
In an interview with NBC set to air Thursday, Ann Romney, wife of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, said her husband’s campaign will not release any additional tax returns to the public ahead of the election.
"We have been very transparent to what’s legally required of us," Romney told reporter Natalie Morales, according to excerpts from NBC News. “There’s going to be no more tax releases given.”
Defying a longstanding trend among presidential candidates, the Romney campaign has only released a single — and likely incomplete — tax return. Politicians and pundits from both sides of the aisle have been pressuring Romney for weeks to disclose more of his tax history, culminating with a claim from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) two weeks ago that he’d heard from an early investor in Bain Capital that Romney didn’t pay any taxes for a decade. Romney has denied that claim.
Ann Romney said that releasing more details on the family’s taxes would merely give the Obama campaign “more ammunition.” The Romneys’ wealth is rumored to be as much as $250 million, and since much of Mitt Romney’s earnings come from investments, he would pay a lower effective tax rate than many lesser-off Americans.
h/t: Huffington Post
Anne Romney, the wife of GOP hopeful Mitt Romney, on Thursday insisted that she and her husband would not be giving voters any more information about their tax returns because they had “given all you people need to know.”
“You know, you should really look at where Mitt has led his life, and where he’s been financially,” Ann Romney told ABC’s Robin Roberts. “He’s a very generous person. We give 10 percent of our income to our church every year. Do you think that is the kind of person who is trying to hide things, or do things? No. He is so good about it. Then, when he was governor of Massachusetts, didn’t take a salary for four years.”
“We’ve given all you people need to know and understand about our financial situation and how we live our life,” the candidate’s wife added.
The Democratic National Committee on Wednesday apologized for a web video that featured a dancing horse to mock the former Massachusetts governor for not releasing his tax returns. The dressage horse, which is owned by the Romneys, will perform ballet at the Summer Olympic Games in London.