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If you are still planning on voting for Mitt Romney for president, I would encourage you to read the transcript of his interview from Sunday's 60 Minutes program.
Mitt describes his too-many-to-count flip-flop positions on issues such as a woman's right to choose, signing a "no new taxes" pledge, or passing an ObamaCare look-a-like healthcare program in Massachusetts....this way....
"The principles I have are the principles I've had from the beginning of my -- of my political life. But have I learned? Have I found that some things I thought would be effective turned out not to be effective? Absolutely."
I'm sorry, but that is simply not true. At the "beginning" of Mitt's "political life", when he ran against Ted Kennedy for a U.S. Senate seat....Mr. Romney was 100% in favor of upholding a woman's right to choose. He explained at the time that Roe was settled law because it had survived court challenges for over 20 years...and therefore, Roe was the established law of the land and should stay that way.
Today Romney is opposed to a woman's right to choose except in the cases of rape, incest or the life of the mother, and, if elected president, he would appoint Supreme Court justices who would overturn Roe. Mitt said recently that overturning Roe would now be his preference.
That is not about finding "things I thought would be effective turned out not to be effective." That is simply a 180 degree turnabout on an issue extremely important to America's women.
But, we've been talking about taxes and economic matters here on the blog.....specifically, capital gains taxes. And it is on the capital gains tax question that Mr. Romney told his biggest whopper while being interviewed on 60 Minutes.
PELLEY: Now, you made on your investments, personally, about twenty million dollars last year. And you paid fourteen percent in federal taxes. That's the capital gains rate. Is that fair to the guy who makes fifty thousand dollars and paid a higher rate than you did?
ROMNEY: It is a low rate. And one of the reasons why the capital gains tax rate is lower is because capital has already been taxed once at the corporate level, as high as thirty-five percent.
Pay close attention here because either Mr. Romney is ignorant....which seems difficult to accept in light of his double-degrees from Harvard.....or, Mr. Romney is simply trying to deceive potential voters with his deceptive answer.
Capital gains tax rates are not lower than, say, income tax rates because "capital has already been taxed once at the corporate level." This falsehood has been used frequently by people defending low tax rates for millionaires....lower tax rates than average middle class workers pay. But Romney's assertion that the capital gains tax rate is lower than income tax rates because of double taxation.....is a lie.
Let's say that you have $1000 saved up to invest. You have already paid income taxes on the $1000 you've saved up. You decide to purchase stocks worth $1000....hoping for a return on your investment. When you sell your stocks, you receive back the original $1000 plus you make a profit of $250. A very good percentage return on your original $1000 investment.
Now here's the question which will prove that Mitt Romney is either ignorant or lying.....
What would you have to pay capital gains taxes on.....only the $250 profit.....or on the original $1000 "capital which has already been taxed" PLUS the $250 in profits?
The correct answer is....only on the $250 profit made. The $250 IS the capital GAIN and it alone is subject to capital gains tax rates.
If that isn't clear, go over it again.....because this lie has been repeated so many times..."capital gains tax rates are low because of double taxation".....that many Americans believe it. But it is a lie, and Romney repeated that lie again Sunday night.
Why did Romney lie about capital being taxed twice when that is not the case? I think it's because he is very self-conscious about his own lower-than-middle-class tax rate.....a capital gains tax rate of 15%.....on the millions he 'earned'. The fact that a guy who 'earned' over $13 million last year and only paid an effective tax rate of 14% while millions of Americans who earned between $50,000 and $150,000 last year paid a higher rate on their regular income......is kind of embarrassing, and especially when that guy wants to reduce taxes on the already rich by another 20%.
Ask yourself.....is it possible for a double Harvard major....law and business....to be ignorant or misinformed about what is taxed, and what is not, when it comes to capital gains? Remember, Mr. Romney has earned the majority of his income from capital gains.....his entire adult life. Does it seem likely that he wouldn't know that investment capital is not taxed twice?
If your answer is...no.....then it must be the case that Mr. Romney lied.....as, I would suggest, he has been doing his entire presidential campaign.
Last question. If Mr. Romney is a habitual liar who often seeks to deceive his audiences by telling lies.....why would anyone want to make him the president of the United States?