Robert Gibbs, campaign adviser to President Barack Obama, said Sunday that Mitt Romney could resolve his tax headache by simply heading to Kinko’s with a little pocket change.
“We could put this to rest tomorrow,” Gibbs, Obama’s former press secretary, said on CNN’s "State of the Union." "Mitt Romney can go to Kinko's, photocopy his tax returns. There are several hundred pages. He could hand them out to people like CNN and to reporters all over the country, and we wouldn't talk about this tomorrow. We wouldn't say, 'Is he paying taxes? What's he paying?' The whole world would know what loopholes he's taking advantage of."
Gibbs took the joke a step further, saying he’d foot the bill for the photocopies.
“I'll send him the nickels," Gibbs said. "I think it's a nickel a page."
Discussion of Romney’s taxes consumed much of the Sunday show circuit this week. The presumptive GOP candidate’s backers assailed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for his statements to The Huffington Post and on the Senate floor that he knew an early Bain Capital investor who said Romney didn’t pay any taxes for a decade.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Sunday accused Reid of lying on the Senate floor about Romney’s taxes, while Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus called Reid "a dirty liar" who was spreading "division and hatred."
The president’s surrogates, meanwhile, took to the airwaves to echo Gibbs' sentiment -- that Romney could dispel the rumors by simply releasing his taxes.
Speaking on "Fox News Sunday," Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod invoked Romney’s father, George Romney, who set a precedent in 1968 by releasing more than a decade’s worth of his own taxes during his presidential bid. Axelrod also raised the fact that several prominent conservatives, including Bill Kristol and George Will, have said that Romney should release his tax returns in order to end the politically damaging discussion.
“So they ought to release those tax returns and that would put all of this to rest,” Axelrod said.