CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Mitt Romney's Swiss bank accounts and Cayman Island investments were hot topics on the opening night of the Democratic National Convention, with several leading Democrats hammering the Republican presidential candidate about them in their speeches.
"Mitt Romney has so little economic patriotism that even his money needs a passport," charged former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland in his fiery speech Tuesday night. "It summers on the beaches of the Cayman Islands and winters on the slopes of the Swiss Alps. In Matthew, chapter 6, verse 21, the scriptures teach us that where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. My friends, any man who aspires to be our president should keep both his treasure and his heart in the United States of America. And it's well past time for Mitt Romney to come clean with the American people."
Romney previously had a Swiss bank account and has millions invested in funds based in the Cayman Islands.
"Instead of safeguarding our seniors, Romney and Ryan would end the guarantee of Medicare and replace it with a voucher in order to give bigger tax breaks to billionaires," said Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. "Instead of investing in America, they hide their money in Swiss bank accounts and ship our jobs to China. Swiss bank accounts never built an American bridge. Swiss bank accounts don't put cops on the beat or teachers in our classrooms. Swiss bank accounts never created American jobs!"
"Governor Romney, just because you bank against the United States of America doesn’t mean the rest of us are willing to sell her out," O'Malley said. "We are Americans."
Women's rights advocate Lilly Ledbetter also joined in, noting that women still earn just 77 cents for every dollar men make.
"Maybe 23 cents doesn't sound like a lot to someone with a Swiss bank account, Cayman Island Investments and an IRA worth tens of millions of dollars," Ledbetter said. "But Governor Romney, when we lose 23 cents every hour, every day, every paycheck, every job, over our entire lives, what we lose can't just be measured in dollars."
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) continued his attacks on Romney for his refusal to release his more information on his taxes. Romney has released his 2010 tax returns and an estimate for 2011, although he has promised to disclose his 2011 return this fall. He has refused to follow the example of his father and release 12 years of his tax information to the public.
"Never in modern American history has a presidential candidate tried so hard to hide himself from the people he hopes to serve," Reid said during his speech at the convention. "When you look at the one tax return he has released, it's obvious why. It's obvious why there's only been one. We learned that he pays a lower tax rate than middle class families. We learned he chose Swiss bank accounts and Cayman Islands tax shelters over American institutions. And we can only imagine what new secrets would be revealed if he showed the American people a dozen years of tax returns -- like his father did."