Huffpost Politics

Sarah Palin vs. Mitt Romney: Former Alaska Governor Says GOP Hopeful Should Release Tax Returns

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Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin suggested Wednesday that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney should release his tax returns, as well as records from his time at Bain Capital.

"What I heard was a little bit what's going on today is some inoculation of the candidate himself, the frontrunner, and what it is that he's going to face when he comes up against Barack Obama. Nobody should be surprised that things about Bain Capital, and maybe tax returns not being released yet, and maybe some records not being as transparently provided to the public as voters deserve to see right now, don't be surprised that's all coming out today," she told Sean Hannity Wednesday on Fox News. "Let's get it out there, let's hear the defense of the candidates who are being charged with some of this. It's kind of like some come-to-Jesus moments for these candidates, and that's good, that's healthy."

In a December interview with NBC News, Romney said he has no plans to release his tax returns. "Never say never, but I don't intend to do so," he said.

Though not required by law, most recent presidential and vice-presidential nominees have chosen to made their tax returns public, including Palin.

Romney told the Des Moines Register editorial board that all of his income in the past 10 years is from dividends, interest and capital gains -- all of which are taxed at a lower rate than personal income. Romney did not take a salary as governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007. His wealth is estimated to be between $190 million and $250 million, according to financial disclosure reports.

The Obama campaign has attacked Romney for not releasing his tax returns. "Why won't Mitt Romney release his tax returns?" tweeted the @BarackObama account recently, liking to a DNC video.

Palin also asked for more proof of Romney's claim that he added "over 100,000 jobs" at Bain Capital. "I think what Gov. Perry is getting at is that Gov. Romney has claimed to create 100,000 jobs at Bain, and people are wanting to know, is there proof of that claim, and was it U.S. jobs created for U.S. citizens?" she said.

Romney's campaign says the figure comes from three companies Bain invested in: The Sports Authority, Staples and Domino's. The figure does not include jobs lost at other companies Bain invested in. But more critically, it's difficult to know what role Romney personally played in creating jobs, as opposed to the the role companies played themselves since the Bain investment.

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